NEW DELHI: Union home minister Amit Shah
on Friday termed Congress functionaries' "black shirt" protest as part of the party's appeasement politics, saying that the it deliberately chose the colour and the second anniversary of the inauguration of the construction of Ram Temple to convey its opposition to the restoration of the temple that symbolises the hopes of crores of people.
"Congress is conveying its opposition to the temple construction and the issues of ED action and price rise are only excuse. Since they could not afford to openly convey their opposition to the temple, they have tried to put across the message subtly," Shah said.
"There have been no riots in the country, no violence and the PM has fulfilled the aspirations of crores of people. Congress chose this day to oppose the foundation of the Ram Janmabhoomi Temple and convey a message that they want to carry forward their policy of appeasement."
Shah said while Congress had been agitating for several days, they had never staged a colour protest. "Everybody saw them protesting in regular clothes. But they chose black clothes for the Friday protest to signal their unhappiness over the way PM Modi peacefully resolved an over 550-year-old dispute, which was associated with the faith of crores of people," he said.
To substantiate his contention that Congress deliberately chose to stage the "black shirt" protest on the day of the second anniversary of the foundation laying for the Ayodhya temple, Shah said ED had taken no action which could have been the trigger for the colour protest. "There was no summons, none was questioned by the ED today, nor any raids took place. Then why did they choose the Friday for protests," he questioned. "Despite being in power for most of the time since Independence, Congress did nothing to resolve the dispute while Modi found a solution to it in a peaceful manner," Shah said, emphasising that the construction of the Ram Temple is now on in full swing.
Stung by the scathing remark, Jairam Ramesh
, head of Congress's media cell, accused Shah of giving a "malicious twist" to their agitation. "The home minister has made a desperate attempt to divert, distract, polarise and give a malicious twist to today's democratic protests of Congress against price rise, unemployment and GST. Clearly, the protests have hit home," he said.
The home minister said the Congress's politics of "appeasement" has hurt the country without benefiting the party. "It was the policy of appeasement which has resulted in Congress's current condition," Shah said.
Shah was equally scathing on Congress's protest over ED's probe into the alleged money laundering in the National Herald case in which Sonia Gandhi
and Rahul have been questioned, saying everybody should respect the law of the land.
"Congress should behave responsibly and cooperate as per the law. The case is going as per the complaints lodged. Congress leaders should also ensure that there is no law and order situation," he said in a clear reference to Congress functionaries seeking to defy prohibitory orders.
Meanwhile, Union education minister Dharmendra Pradhan said it was not just a coincidence for "black money earners" to wear black on this historic day. "It was a well-thought-out creation for vote bank and politics of appeasement," Pradhan said.