Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah on Saturday laid the roadmap for 2019 general elections at a rally in Jammu on Saturday, projecting the BJP as the only nationalist outfit, even as he billed the opposition parties as “anti-national.”
Speaking at the death anniversary of Jana Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee, which came days after his party's decision to withdraw support from the People's Democratic Party (PDP)-led government in the state, he praised Mookherjee for “integrating” Jammu and Kashmir with rest of the India.
He also credited Modi government for killing more militants in Kashmir than previous governments but didn’t mentioned the spike in killings of civilians and security personnel, which have also increased manifold n the past four years.
The BJP chief took potshots on Congress over recent remarks made by Ghulam Nabi Azad and Saifuddin Soz over Kashmir. “Congress President Rahul Gandhi should apologize for the statements made by his party leaders and take action against them,” he demanded.
However, Congress in a quick rebuttal told Shah that his party had no business lecturing Congress on nationalism, accusing Modi government of betraying people of the state
Maintaining that the BJP will never be able to realise the hard work which Congress-UPA did to usher peace in J&K, senior Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala said that the BJP has “shamelessly squandered” the mandate and “shunned” their responsibility after plunging the state into a deep turmoil.
Surjewala said that, through an unethical opportunistic alliance marred with a troubled border, corruption and malgovernance in the last four years, BJP president Amit Shah was shedding crocodile tears in front of the people of Jammu.
(The story was updated with minor edits at 5:14 PM).