Davanagere : Making an indirect reference to communal tension prevalent in the backdrop of three murders taking place in Dakshina Kannada district, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday said Karnataka has never faced violence as it is facing today.
“If we ask people in the United States, what do they think of Karnataka today? They will tell you that Karnataka never faced the type of violence they are facing today. They will tell you when the Congress was in power, Karnataka was in harmony. All communities lived happily together. Nobody was scared. And they also tell you that harmony and peace are the most important things for business,” he said addressing Siddaramotsava gathering here.
Siddaramotsava is a public rally that the supporters of Siddaramaiah have organised to celebrate his 75th birthday.
Whereas the Congress government brought people together and created harmony in the state, the BJP government is dividing people and spreading hatred in Karnataka, Gandhi said.
The Dakshina Kannada district has been on the boil after it witnessed three murders since July 19. The BJP workers had resorted to mass resignation in protest after the brutal killing of BJP youth leader Praveen Nettaru in Bellare on July 26 night. They had rapped the BJP government for failing to protect Hindu activists in the state.
The BJP activists also were raising slogans for Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath-type governance in Karnataka which is synonymous with weaponization of law machinery.
On Kannada “discrimination” of Kannada language via implementation of the National Education Policy, Gandhi alleged that the BJP wants to colonise Karnataka and impose one idea on top of it.
“For us your language; your culture; your history are fundamental for the future of India. We believe that all the languages, all the histories, all cultures make India. The BJP wants to impose one idea on top of Karnataka. They want to colonise Karnataka,” he said.
Referring to 40 per cent commission government charges, Gandhi said the BJP reveres Lord Basavanna and then steals from people of Karnataka. The BJP government is deeply immersed in corruption, the former AICC President said.
“The whole of Karnataka can see the levels of corruption that the BJP government is immersed in. The BJP bows before Basavanna’s statue and then steals from the people of Karnataka. Where did Basavanna say that you should steal? Basavanna ji said be honest and say what you believe. Opposite is what the BJP government does. We believe in the culture, the language and the tradition of Karnataka,” he said.
While the Congress distributes wealth, the BJP and the RSS, Gandhi said, take away wealth from the people and give it to the richest people of the land, whereas Congress distributes it to poor people.
On the one side the Congress implements po-poor policies like Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, right to food bill and farm loan waiver, on the other hand the BJP brings in anti-poor and anti-farmer policies like demonetisation, GST and farm bills, he said.
The Congress wants to help Karnataka develop and make weaker people here strong, Gandhi said. “People still remember schemes like Anna Bhagya, Krishi Bhagya, Shira Bhagya, Vidyashri and Indira canteen,” he said.