Secularism means India first: Modi

Modi, in the reference to Gandhi’s meeting with Bukhari where she had made the appeal for minority votes, said, ‘Congress is sensing defeat. So now, their slogan has shifted from secularism to rabid communalism by appealing to Muslim leaders to ensure their votes are not split.’ Taking an aggressive posture, the BJP prime ministerial candidate sought Election Commission’s action in this regard.

‘I am surprised why the Election Commission has not taken suo moto notice of the appeal as asking for votes on the basis of communalism is against the rules of Election Commission as the polls have been announced,’ he said. Modi, on Thursday, addressed a huge public rally at Indirapuram on Ghaziabad-Noida border to support party candidates Gen VK Singh and Dr Mahesh Sharma. Modi chose to lash out at the Congress president and raise the issue of communalism at Indirapuram as the venue is just a stone’s throw away from the national Capital. He started his address to a cheering congregation of nearly a lakh supporters by invoking the name of late Field Marshal Sam Maneckshaw whose centenary celebration started on Thursday.

‘Maneckshaw belonged to Parsi community but lead the army during war with Pakistan. Army is the most secular organisation but government of Sonia madam tried dividing it on religious count by ordering a communal count. This was resisted by then army chief Gen VK Singh. I am grateful to them that they stood up to the government to save the institution,’ said Modi. VK Singh is the party’s candidate from Ghaziabad.

‘Sonia has made the mistake of trying to mislead and divide the nation. People will never forgive this kind of politics. For Congress, secularism is religion first but for us it is India first,’ he said. ‘For Congress secularism is an election slogan. For us every community is ours. For Congress secularism is vote bank politics, for BJP development is national agenda. For Congress, it is a political weapon, for us it is an article of faith,’ he added.
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