Congress stepped up its offensive against the BJP on Saturday following reports that one of the main defendants in the murder of tailor Kanhaiyalal in Udaipur and a Lashkar-e-Toiba activist arrested in Jammu and Kashmir had links to the ruling party.
With the monsoon session of parliament due to begin on June 18, Congress is keen to keep the issue alive to pin the government and ruling party on the issue of nationalism.
Congress held 23 press conferences across the country on Saturday, accusing the ruling BJP of playing a “disgusting game” to hollow out the country under the guise of nationalism. Its spokespersons have asked the BJP to introspect how such elements end up in its fold and provide an explanation for this.
The opposition party has already asked the NIA to expand its investigation into the Udaipur murder to probe allegations that Mohammad Riyaz Attari, one of the main defendants in Kanhaiyalal’s murder, had links to the BJP .
The Congress offensive stems from a new thinking within the party that the BJP must be strongly countered on its nationalism board. On Saturday, Congress attacked the BJP for allowing the production and import of machine-made polyester and national flags.
“BJP has links with terrorists, what do you call this relationship?…Today 23 of our leaders and spokespersons exposed BJP links with terrorists by holding press conferences in different cities of the country,” AICC Secretary General in charge of the Communication Department, Jairam Ramesh, said.
Sources within the party said its MPs would raise the issue in parliament and demand answers from the government, signaling that the monsoon session could be a stormy affair.
Addressing a press conference in Raipur, the head of the Congress media department, Pawan Khera, said the party had never favored policy on the issue of terrorism, but the way the “terrorist links and criminals with the BJP are exposed one after another, it has become necessary to ask questions and present the facts to people”.
“Under the guise of nationalism, the BJP is playing a disgusting game to gut the country,” he said.
In Mumbai, party spokesman Ajoy Kumar combed through the Kandahar terror exchange. He said the BJP government had the dubious distinction of freeing fearsome terrorist Masood Azhar in 1999 during the Kandahar hijacking.
“Azhar then created the terrorist group Jaish-e-Muhammad which was responsible for the 2001 Parliament attack and the 2008 Mumbai bombings which left hundreds dead. Jaish also orchestrated the Pulwama attack in 2019 , in which 44 CRPF personnel died after 200 kg of high explosives, including RDX, managed to breach several security checkpoints.Why an investigation into Pulwama did not take place remains unclear. mystery,” he said.