New Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi today attacked Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and RSS over his jibe at actor Aamir Khan for remarks on intolerance, telling them bluntly “hate is the preserve of the coward and it never wins”. The opposition party accused BJP and RSS of a “concerted conspiracy” to hound Dalits, minorities, writers, actors and whoever dissents against the Narendra Modi government. ”RSS & Parrikarji want to teach everyone a lesson. Here’s a lesson for you: hate is the preserve of the coward and it never wins,” the Congress Vice President said on micro-blogging site Twitter.
Parrikar had yesterday said anyone speaking against the country must be “taught a lesson” and had referred to alleged anti-national sloganeering at JNU earlier this year and remarks by an “actor” who “had said that his wife wants to live out of India”. Khan had late last year spoken about a “sense of insecurity” resulting from increasing intolerance in the country, and mentioned his wife Kiran Rao’s apprehensions about the future of their child in India.
According to Parrikar, when the actor made the statement last year, many people had protested against his remark and even uninstalled the mobile application of an online shopping site he was associated with, while the firm had also pulled out the advertisement featuring him. Congress spokesperson Randeep S Surjewala said it was a “shocking revelation” by Parrikar and showed that BJP and RSS supporters actively disrupted and sabotaged an online trading company on Aamir Khan issue.
“Shameful that @manoharparrikar threatens ‘teaching a lesson’ to ‘actors’, instead of training his guns elsewhere,” “Scandalous,” he tweeted questioning whether Parrikar’s job is to protect India from external aggressors like Pakistan or threaten fellow countrymen. [email protected] statement proves a concerted conspiracy to curb all dissent, hound Dalits & Minorities. Can this be the ‘Raj Dharma’?,” he tweeted.
Later in a statement to the media, he alleged that Parrikar has “unknowingly” exposed the conspiracy through which BJP people targeted the online company, booked orders and cancelled in pursuance of a conspiracy to ensure that Aamir Khan was removed as its brand ambassador. He said the incident “now established that there is a concerted conspiracy against poor, the dalits, the minorities, artists, actors and anybody who dissents against Modi Without naming Aamir, Parrikar had said his comments were “arrogant”.
“How does someone dare to talk about this country? If anyone speaks like this, he has to be taught the lesson of his life,” he said yesterday at a function in Pune.