Sibal says Modi not Hindu, BJP hits back
Congress leader Kapil Sibal on Thursday questioned how many times Prime Minister Narendra Modi has gone to temples, and said Modi has given up Hindu religion for the sake of Hindutva. The BJP hit back, saying that Sibal has lost his mental balance.
Speaking to reporters here, a day after a controversy broke out over Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi's visit to the Somnath temple in Gujarat, Sibal asked: "How many times does the Prime Minister go to a temple? Does he go to temple every morning?"
"The people who go to temples are those who respect the sentiments of Hindu religion. He (Modi) has given up Hindu religion and adopted Hindutva which has nothing to do with the Hindu religion," Sibal said.
"A true Hindu is one who considers every Indian as brother, sister or mother... does not say anything that hurts the sentiment of others... reacts immediately against violence... does not do politics on everything and goes amidst the farmers and understand their problems," Sibal added.
On Wednesday, the BJP questioned the faith of Gandhi after his media coordinator Manoj Tyagi signed the register meant for non-Hindus in Somnath temple, which the Congress claimed was manipulated later by adding the names of Rahul Gandhi and Ahmed Patel.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) hit back at Sibal.
"Kapil Sibalji may have lost his mental balance so he is making such statements. Maybe he needs to get his brain examined," BJP National General Secretary of Kailash Vijayvargiya said.
Party spokesperson Nalin Kohli called it a "zero argument".
"What a strange comment from Kapil Sibalji, his fame is zero loss theory, this is zero argument. His zero loss theory was actually rejected by the honourable Supreme Court... just like that today he has come with a zero argument," said Kohli.
He said the question arose as Rahul Gandhi's associate wrote his name in the register meant for non-Hindus, and denied any role of the BJP in the incident.
"This has to be explained by the Congress party, it is not a conspiracy by BJP," Kohli said.
He added that Rahul Gandhi is free under the Constitution of India to be of any religion.
"Why pretend what you are not?" he added.
Party spokesperson G.V.L. Narasimha Rao alleged there was "secrecy and deceit" about the Nehru-Gandhi family.
"RahulG, Why is there so much secrecy and deceit about your and family's religion, foreign travels, educational qualifications, passports/citizenship? Questions are never answered. Even British monarchy is more transparent. Is RTI only for government and not for politicians?" he tweeted. - IANS