Accusing BJP of fanning communal flames, Rahul Gandhi said the party’s “politics of hatred” was damaging the country’s fabric and apprehended he may also be assassinated like his grandmother and father, who had fallen victim to it.
Striking an emotional chord, the Congress Vice President said that when he visited riot-hit Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh sometime back and talked to both Hindus and Muslims, he could see his own story in their words.
“I was seeing my face in their grief. That is why I am against their (BJP’s) politics … What do they do. They will put Muzaffarnagar on fire, Gujarat on fire, UP on fire and Kashmir on fire and then you and we will have to douse that. This damages the country,” Gandhi said.
He said that such politics leads to anger and resentment and precious lives are lost in violence.
“My grandmother was killed. My father was assassinated and perhaps I may also be killed one day. I am not bothered. I had to tell you what I felt from the heart,” Gandhi said and vowed to oppose BJP’s politics.
Gandhi, whose grandmother Indira Gandhi was killed by her Sikh bodyguards during the militancy days in Punjab and father Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by LTTE, also narrated an incident of an MLA from Punjab visiting his office recently and telling him that had they met 20 years ago, he would have killed the Congress Vice President due to anger.
“Anybody can get angry. The anger is deliberately put into people. Politicians do it. Interested party does it. And then the common man, who is hurt has to carry this anger with him. He moves everywhere with this anger. That is why I am against the politics of BJP. Because what they do is that they hurt (people) for political gains.”
He told the gathering, which included a number of Sikhs, that after the assassination of her grandmother, he came to know that the assassins Satwant Singh and Beant Singh wanted lob a grenade at her grandmother on Diwali.
Gandhi said it took him 10 15 years to put aside his anger against his friends Beant Singh andSatwant Singh, who were bodyguards of his grandmother.
Pointing towards Sikhs sitting there, Gandhi said that people in Punjab were angry then but now that anger has subsided.
“Some months back, an MLA from Punjab had come to me. Talks were going on. Before leaving he told me that had he met me 20 years back, he would have killed. He said that he was full of anger then but now he can even embrace me.
“It takes years for that anger to subside but a minute to provoke it … it take so much time to remove that anger and create brotherhood,” he said.
Relating the anger among a section of people due to communal violence to the larger theme of resentment due to deprivation in society, the Congress vice-president said that anger does not emanate only from killings and also from hunger.