TARGETTING Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah and the RSS, Gujarat MLA and Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani Wednesday urged opposition parties in Maharashtra to unite to fight the assembly election.
“If all the opposition parties come together, the (Devendra) Fadnavis government can be ousted. But if they refuse to join hands, the chances of opposition parties being bundled out… can’t be ruled out,” he said at a rally, ‘Savindhan Jagran Abhiyan’, in Pimpri on Wednesday.
Lamenting that no opposition exists in Maharashtra at present, Mevani asked, “Where is the opposition in Maharashtra? There is no sign of opposition parties. Had they been in existence, the streets would have been jammed over the misrule of the government.”
He added, “I am from Gujarat and so is Modi. But he is trying to destroy the Constitution and implement ‘Manusmriti’ while I am trying to uphold the secular, democratic and socialist principles enshrined in the preamble of the Constitution. That’s the difference”.
Attacking Shah, Mevani said, “There was another Gujarati who visited Maharashtra recently. He spoke about forcing Hindi upon the nation. We should all speak Hindi but Hindi can’t be made compulsory. Unity in diversity is the beauty of this nation… why are they tyring to ruin this….”
Alleging that imposing Hindi was part of the BJP’s agenda, Mevani said, “Now they will go to Tamil Nadu and Kerala and try to impose Hindi, which is against the spirit of the Constitution….This is the game they are playing.”
Mevani said lakhs of poor people in the country were fighting to get two square meals a day but “these fascist forces are bent on dividing Hindus and Muslims in the name of cow”.
Mevani alleged that the BJP-led government was side-tracking real issues affecting the nation. “Thousands of farmers are committing suicide, children are dying, the automobile sector is witnessing a slowdown…neither are these issues being discussed nor are serious efforts being made to find a solution. Instead, the government is bent on dividing the society and hurting our social fabric,” he said, adding that people should also take the blame for this as they fail to ask questions of the government.
Also present at the event was Justice (retired) B G Kolse-Patil, who also attacked Modi and Shah in his address and accused them of trying to undermine the Constitution of the country. ‘Intellectuals and thinkers who raise their voices against the government are being arrested. But those who incite violence are roaming free,” he said.