Shillong, Feb 23 (IANS) Charging the Narendra Modi government with promoting a narrow-minded idea of India based on Hindutva, senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Friday appealed to voters in Meghalaya not to vote for the BJP in the February 27 Assembly polls.
“This is a government with no tangible achievements. What it has been trying to do is to change the very nature of what India is all about. For 70 years, we have been trying to build India. Even the first NDA government did not dare to tamper with the idea of India as a country of all people,” he told journalists here.
“They (BJP) come to Meghalaya and they talked about being kind to Christians in BJP-ruled states. I am sorry to say — we have seen horrendous incidents involving Christians,” Tharoor said.
Questioning the real face of the Bharatiya Janata Party-led governments, the two-time Congress MP said: “This is a two-faced government. In Meghalaya, they are opening their arms to all, and in Delhi they are denying visa to a pastor who wishes to come to India to celebrate 150 years of Christianity in the Garo Hills. They come here and say you can eat whatever you like. In the rest of India, they beat and even kill people on suspicion of eating beef.”
Attacking the National People’s Party and other regional outfits in Meghalaya, the former Minister of State for External Affairs said: “I have been somebody who is interested in national vision, and not regional one, but in this particular case, the NPP sadly is trying to have it both ways.”
The NPP, founded by former Lok Sabha Speaker Purno A. Sangma to champion the cause of the people of the northeast, is supporting the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance government at the Centre, Rajasthan and Manipur.
Tharoor also praised the state’s Congress government headed by Mukul Sangma for improvement in education and health sectors.
The Congress leader said Meghalaya had gone ahead of Kerala in the female literacy rate due to the state government’s commitment to the Right to Education Act.