Mumbai, 22 April-2014(IANS/PTI): Shiv Sena leader Ramdas Kadam said on Monday that they will not spare the Muslims in Mumbai or any parts in India if NDA comes to power. He added, “Muslims, who vandalised police vehicles, damaged public property and attacked women police personnel during the Azad Maidan riots in August 2011, “will not be spared”. The targeting of specific communities is on the rise with a few right wing leaders pouring vitriol in their election speeches. Confident of a BJP-led NDA victory in the Lok Sabha elections.
At a rally in Mumbai yesterday, just a few minutes before Mr Modi arrived, a leader from the Shiv Sena said to the large crowd, “Narendra Modi will destroy Pakistan within six months if he comes to power.” The remarks by Ramdas Kadam are the latest in a series of comments by hardliners that are threatening to over-shadow the election.
Kadam added that Narendra Modi will also avenge the attacks on Indian soldiers by Pakistan once he became the Prime Minister. Narendra Modi today appeared to condemn virulent anti-Muslim remarks by one-time associate Pravin Togadia, but his party finds itself entangled in a new episode of hate remarks.
Mr Kadam’s party, the Shiv Sena, is the oldest ally of the BJP, which has declared Mr Modi its prime ministerial candidate. After Mr Modi arrived at the venue with Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, Mr Kadam continued in Marathi, “If 5 lakh Muslims can gather at the Azad Maidan, desecrate memorials, attack policemen and molest policewomen. Narendra Modi will surely teach them a lesson.”
It is mentioned that 80 people charged for Azad Maidan agitation last year and still 20+ spending jail terms.
His party has distanced itself from the comments. “The statements of Ramdas Kadam don’t echo the sentiments of Bal Thackeray, Udhav Thackeray and the Shiv Sena. It is his personal view,” the Sena said. This morning, Mr Modi tweeted, “Petty statements by those claiming to be BJP’s well-wishers are deviating the campaign from the issues of development & good governance (sic).”
His reprimand is being seen as a reaction to Pravin Togadia, a leader of the right-wing Vishwa Hindu Parishad, who faces a police investigation after a video appeared to show him urging Hindus to evict Muslims from their neighbourhoods in Gujarat. [Input source: PTI/IANS/NDTV]