With his party making the anti-CAA protests a poll plank to target the ruling AAP in Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, mentioning the Shaheen Bagh protests for the first time, sharpened the attack Monday, saying there was a “design” to destroy amity in the country.
In his first campaign speech in Delhi which will vote for a new Assembly on February 8, Modi told a rally in Karkardooma: “Seelampur ho, Jamia ho ya phir Shaheen Bagh, beete kayi dinon se Citizenship Amendment Bill ko lekar pradarshan hua. Kya ye pradarshan sirf ek sanyog hai? Ji nahi, ye sanyog nahi, ye ek prayog hai. Iske peeche rajneeti ka ek aisa design hai jo rashtra ke sauhard ko khandit karne ke iraade rakhta hai.”(“Be it Seelampur, Jamia or Shaheen Bagh, the past few days have seen protests against the Citizenship Amendment Bill. Are these protests merely a coincidence? No, this is an experiment. Behind this is a political design which intends to destroy the amity of the country.”)
Hitting out at the AAP and Congress, Modi said: “Had it been just a protest against a law, it would have ended after the government gave all assurances. The AAP and Congress are playing politics and everything is clear now. Keeping the Constitution and Tricolour in the forefront, gyaan baata ja raha hai (people are being lectured). And an attempt is being made to divert attention from the real conspiracy.”
Incidentally, in his rally at Ramlila Maidan on December 22, Modi had invoked the Tricolour in a different context: “When I see protesters wielding stones, I feel upset. But when I see some protesters out with the Tricolour in their hands, it brings some sukoon (peace) too. Those who are protesting with the flag in their hands, I am sure, will also speak out against Pakistan, against terrorism. Holding the flag is our right, but that also brings some responsibilities.”
On Monday, Modi said that the anti-CAA protests were causing inconvenience to people travelling between Delhi and Noida. “This is causing a lot of inconvenience to people commuting between Delhi and Noida. People of Delhi are watching. They understand, they are silent and are angry over this votebank politics. This mindset needs to be stopped here. If the number of conspirators increases, they will block some other road or lane tomorrow. We cannot leave Delhi in anarchy. Only people of Delhi can stop it. Every vote given to the BJP holds this power, only it can do this,” he said.
“Supreme Court and High Courts have expressed unhappiness over the violence, arson, ruckus caused during demonstrations. These people don’t care about the courts but speak of the Constitution,” he said.
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