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Modi thrives on politics of hate: Rahul Gandhi


Rahul Gandhi, India’s main opposition party Congress vice-president. PHOTO: REUTERS

Vice president of India’s opposition Congress Party and heir to the Nehru-Gandhi political dynasty
Rahul Gandhi once again lashed out at India Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Rahul had a conversation with Nicolas Berggruen, chairman of the Berggruen Institute and publisher
of the WordPost, reported Huffington Post.

During his recent visit to US, he discussed India’s challenges of internal migration, Hindu nationalist
politics and the rising power of China in Asia. “The central difference between the United States and
India’s system is that India is composed of 29 states with completely different cultures and
languages. In that sense, our diversity is more like Europe’s. If you look at states like Tamil Nadu
[in the south] and Mizoram [in the northeast], the differences between them are greater than
between any two countries in Europe,” he said on democracy, its challenges and the forces of national-
ism and populism.

Rahul wnt on to compare India to China and said the two are going through mass migration from
rural areas to mega-cities. “In the Chinese system, that mass movement is controlled. In India,
people from all our different cultures, languages and religions are able to move freely to any city in
the country,” Rahul added. All the stresses of modernity and migration affect the present tone of politics
in India. Economic insecurity about finding work and anxieties over identity are being aggressively
exploited by the right-wing. They spread fake news, promote ethnic rifts and foment polarization in
order to gain power across states.

“The central fight between the BJP and the Congress Party is about caste,” he started while describing
the difference between Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and his Congress Party. “The Congress Party
brought the idea of one man, one vote to India. That idea is inimical to the caste tradition. The only way
to weaken the caste system is to strengthen the vote. You don’t strengthen the vote by destroying
institutions but by empowering the democratic process.”

He voiced disapproval of the ruling BJP and its umbrella organisation like the right-wing Hindu nationalist
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). “Hatred is their man weapon. They are creating massive fault
lines by isolating millions of our people. Tribals, Dalits and Muslims are simply being told by the ruling
party that they cannot be part of India’s vision. Journalists are being shot dead.”

While addressing the current conditions of the country, Rahul stated, “[Prime Minister Narendra] Modi
came to power by promising jobs, and his record so far has been disastrous. His administration is
taking the anger of the youth and diverting it against minorities. That is what most right-wing leaders do
― this bait-and-switch is not dissimilar from what the right-wing are doing all over the world.”

While describing the problems of civil discomfort caused by rising rates of unemployment, Rahul said
that the combination of joblessness along with “institutional civil war” is a true crisis for democratic
societies. He said that PM Modi and president of the Phillipines Duerte “thrive on hatred and disrespect
institutions.”

When asked of his thoughts on China’s Silk Road initiative, he said, “It is a powerful policy from their
perspective. It is an attempt at redesigning the world. I don’t see a clear response to it; however, I am
not one of those that underestimate their capability to pull it off.”

“Modi has followed the model of the Muslim Brotherhood [in Egypt] to use democracy to come to power.
He has filled our institutions with people who propagate a certain divisive ideology and is now imposing
a vision of India that excludes India’s Dalits, tribals and minorities. He is a status-quoist pretending to
be a reformer,” he concluded.

Source:The Express Tribune, Published: September 28, 2017




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