Oppn attacks govt for encouraging organisations of cow vigilantes

New Delhi: The Opposition today accused the BJP-led government of encouraging organisations behind the violence by cow vigilantes, with Congress claiming that lynching of people in the name of religion and cow protection began only after it assumed power.

Initiating a discussion on the issue of mob lynching in the Lok Sabha, Leader of the Congress Mallikarjun Kharge said ‘Hindustan’ should not be allowed to become “lynchistan”.

This government is against minorities, Dalits and women, he alleged, saying these sections had borne the maximum brunt of mob violence. The Prime Minister says he was against it, but what action has he taken, Kharge asked and said “He says something and does something else.”

He asked the government to give details of the action taken against the accused in these cases, claiming that they had become brazen because of lack of action.

Citing a number of incidents this year to say that the lynchings had mostly happened in the BJP-ruled states, he said there was an atmosphere of fear and terror across the country, which has brought a bad name to India in the world. He named Hindutva organisations like the VHP and Bajrang Dal, saying they were involved in such violence.

“It is also being done so that your ideology and philosophy could be established in the country,” the Congress leader said, pointing to the BJP’s “links” with these outfits.

BJP-ruled Jharkhand and Madhya Pradesh had become centres of mob lynching, he said, adding that such incidents would become a major threat to the nation’s integrity. Referring to the murder of a BJP worker in Kerala, he said the Governor there summoned the DGP on the issue, but nothing of that sort was done in other states where the people were lynched.

BJP members objected to Kharge citing incidents, saying many of the cases he was referring to were sub-judice.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar also objected to his reference to former President Pranab Mukherjee’s speech, saying it was against rules. Kumar said action had been taken against the hooliganism which had taken place in the name of cow protection.

Countering Kharge’s onslaught against the government, BJP leader Hukumdev Narayan Yadav slammed the opposition for targeting the NDA government over incidents of lynchings, saying Prime Minister Narendra Modi has repeatedly come out strongly against such acts.

“Some people are indulging in terror activities to defame the government. They are questioning our intentions. It is wrong,” he said.

Yadav equated the lynching incidents with the killing of RSS workers in Kerala and that of a police officer in Kashmir and asked whether these were not equivalent to mob violence.

He said a fight between two ideologies has been going on for several decades and asserted that those who follow the path of “economic development and nationalism” will come out victorious.

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