The Congress is wary of the BJP’s neo-Hindutva in the backdrop of the Gyanvapi row and the recent political turmoil in Maharashtra where the Shiv Sena rebels have taken the cover of Hindutva to break away ahead of the crucial Presidential polls where the BJP has fielded a tribal woman candidate.
The Congress wants to take on ‘Hindutva’, with a social and economic agenda to counter the BJP.
The party leaders, having long deliberated over the issue, said that ideological differences with the BJP is core to the Congress politics and to fight for the people’s cause is the key takeaway from the just concluded Chintan Shivir of the party. The party is now readying for its nationwide satyagraha on June 27 against the Agnipath scheme on military recruitment and wants to assimilate itself with peoples issue.
On the Gyanvapi row, seeking maintenance of status quo at places of worship, Congress General Secretary Ajay Maken said: “The matter is under the purview of the court and we hope justice would be delivered as the case of the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute was decided on the basis of the Places of Worship Act, 1991, which says that the religious character of a place of worship shall continue to be the same as it existed on August 15, 1947.”
Dubbing it a “political” move, the Congress says it is a “diversionary” tactic by the BJP to brush the issues of inflation, unemployment and rupee fall under the carpet.
The Congress has also targeted the BJP over Nupur Sharma’s statement on the Prophet, which led the government to issue a statement. On the BJP action against Sharma and Naveen Jindal, former Home Minister and Congress leader P Chidambaram said, “Mrs Nupur Sharma and Mr Naveen were not the original creators of Islamophobia, they were trying to be more loyal than the king.”
The Congress is now taking up issues related to the public and party General Secretary Organization KC Venugopal in a letter to all state units said, “Continuing our uncompromising fight against the Agnipath scheme, in the second stage all Pradesh Congress Committees are requested to observe a peaceful satyagraha on Monday.”
The Congress’s newly appointed General Secretary Jairam Ramesh during a press conference said, “Congress talks of Bharat Jodo while BJP is of the view of Rahul Todo.”
In May the Congress had announced a major mass contact programme, the ‘Bharat Jodo’, foot march which will start on October 2.
“We will launch a national Kanyakumari to Kashmir Bharat Jodo Yatra from Gandhi Jayanti this year. All of us will participate in it. The Yatra is to strengthen the bonds of social harmony that are under stress, to preserve the foundational values of our Constitution that are under assault, and to highlight the day-to-day concerns of crores of our people,” party president Sonia Gandhi had said.
The Congress resolution also mentioned about the fight for all sections of the society and particularly about the caste census, which is a big OBC push. Congress leaders point out that it may affect the BJP’s social engineering in many states, especially in the election-going states.
“The Congress was born from the masses and we have been fighting for the people which is in our DNA,” former party president Rahul Gandhi had said.