BJP on Sunday welcomed the public admission by senior Congress leader AK Antony that his party’s secularism was slanted in favour of minorities and said that it now stands vindicated regarding its position on the issue.
Addressing first-time BJP MPs on the concluding day of an orientation workshop here, party veteran LK Advani lauded the “honest soul-searching” by Antony and hoped that more Congress leaders would back his stand.
“We should welcome this honest soul-searching by AK Antony for he is now saying what we in BJP have been saying all along.
“We have always said that secularism should mean justice for all, appeasement of none and discrimination against none,” Advani said.
At a recent conference in Kerala, Antony had said that Congress’s secularism was slanted in favour of the minority community and that had led to the majority section being alienated from the party.
Antony, the former Defence Minister, had also called for introspection on Congress’s policy regarding secularism. Taking a dig at Congress, Advani said, “I hope more and
more Congress leaders endorse what Antony has said, leading to a change in Congress’s approach to secularism. “As far as our party is concerned, there is already a perceptible change in the way minority communities have been looking at the Narendra Modi government.”
Advising the new MPs to consolidate the trend of minorities voting for BJP, Advani asked them to make the categories of majority and minority completely irrelevant. “We should make the categories of majority and minority completely irrelevant while fully safeguarding people’s rights and freedoms to follow their respective religions,” he said.
Advani said BJP’s decisive victory in the just-concluded Lok Sabha elections had not only changed the political landscape of the country but also influenced the political debate in the opposition camp.
Birla said her campaign this time is “very similar” to the last time.