PM Narendra Modi, BJP have strategy to polarise nation: Rahul Gandhi

New Delhi(PTI): Launching a direct attack on Prime Minister and BJP in the wake of Dadri beef lynching, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi today alleged that they have a “strategy” to polarise the country by pitting Hindus and Muslims against each other as he remarked that Narendra Modi has a “history”.

Rahul Gandhi

“The BJP and the Prime Minister have a strategy of polarising this country. They have a strategy of making Hindus and Muslims fight against each other. “You can see that in every election, polarisation taking place, riots taking place. There were BJP people involved in the Dadri incident,” the Congress vice president alleged while talking to reporters here. Dismissing the Prime Minister’s pitch yesterday for communal harmony, he said that while it was very nice of Modi to make such comments, “the Prime Minister has a history and the PM has a party that is behaving in a completely different way, which he doesn’t seem to want to stop”.

Modi had yesterday pitched for communal harmony, saying Hindus and Muslims should not fight each other but together fight poverty.

Gandhi, who is on a two-day visit of party-ruled state during which he will meet farmers affected by drought and other agricultural problems, also accused the Centre of neglecting farmers’ interests. “The central government does not think that agriculture or the farmer is important. Whether it is the issue of Minimum Support Price (MSP) or crops being destroyed by bad weather, the government does not seem to have a strategy. It does not give priority to farmers,” he said.

Ruing that farmers are committing suicide in large numbers, he insisted the central government needs to do something about it. “The Prime Minister has to take a look at it and help the farmers of the country,” he said.

Contrasting the functioning of the previous UPA government with that of the present dispensation, Gandhi said the Congress-led government had given a loan waiver of Rs 70,000 crore to the farmers. He will also undertake a ‘padyatra’ tomorrow and hold interactions with farmers, students and women workers in Haveri district.

Gandhi is today holding interactions with sugarcane cultivators and farmers from Mandya and nearby areas. “I visited the families of those who committed suicide. The reality is that there is an agricultural crisis in the country. It is very important that the farmer who gives his life for the country and works for the country is supported. We had discussions with the chief minister and other ministers and have some ideas as to what we are going to do, which will be announced by the chief minister tomorrow,” he said.

Further targeting the Centre, he said that “the sad part is that the support which the central government should give to the state is missing”. “The state has made demands which the central government is not taking seriously. The central government does not think that agriculture or farmer is important. This is very unfortunate,” he said.

Claiming that when UPA was in the government, it did not view farmers “as Karnataka, Bihar or Jharkhand farmers”, he alleged, “The BJP government views different states differently. If the state is controlled by them, they have a different idea, if not, they have a different idea. It is very sad. The people who are suffering are all Indian people. The issue is how sensitive you are to farmers. “They are struggling. When the Congress government was in power, we supported them. We helped them with Rs 70,000 crore loan waiver, we maintained an MSP, we ensured whatever trouble they were going through, they felt they were supported by the government. That is what is lacking in this government,” Gandhi said.

He also took a swipe at Modi’s foreign visits. “Our PM goes everywhere, he goes to US may be he should spend sometime with the farmers of this country and Karnataka,” he said.

Meanwhile, in reference to the upcoming Bihar Assembly polls, which Congress is contesting as part of an alliance with RJD and JD(U), Gandhi dismissed suggestions that RJD chief Lalu Prasad did not want to share the dais with him at campaign rallies. “There is no such thing,” he said.