Union Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai on Monday asserted that "all minority groups" were secure in the country, "more than anywhere else in the world", though parties opposed to the BJP suggested otherwise because of "appeasement politics".
Rai made the averment at a press conference he addressed at the Bihar BJP headquarters in Patna, in response to a query about a recent remark by RJD national general secretary Abdul Bari Siddiqui that he wanted his children to settle abroad because of the "atmosphere in the country".
"All minority groups, including the one which Siddiqui is hinting at, are safe in the country. They are safer than anywhere else in the world. I say this with all the responsibility at my command as the Union MoS for Home", said Rai, who formerly headed the BJP’s Bihar unit.
Rai was of the opinion that parties like RJD, and its ally Congress, spoke of threats to minorities "to get sympathy of certain sections of the society for electoral gains".
"This is called the politics of appeasement. It is this politics of appeasement that had caused Partition of the country", alleged the Union minister who, when asked whether he thought Mahatma Gandhi too was guilty of politics of appeasement, replied "not Gandhi ji, but those who went on to rule Pakistan and the truncated India were pursuing such politics in their respective pursuit of power".
He also accused Congress leader Rahul Gandhi of undermining the armed forces during speeches delivered as part of the "Bharat Jodo Yatra" and claimed "hostile neighbours like China and Pakistan have realized that this is not the India of 1960s. With Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the helm, no power would dare to go to war with us. Even if a war takes place, the outcome is going to be in India’s favour".
Training his guns at Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who was a BJP ally until snapping of ties in August, Rai said "we learn that he is going take out another yatra. These gimmicks confirm that his governance track record has been miserable".
When pointed out that his party has for long been an ally of Kumar, the JD(U)’s de facto leader, on whom it used to shower encomiums for bringing about development in Bihar, the BJP leader said "all sectors in which there has been any improvement, happened to be portfolios held by our party".
The Union minister also frowned upon Kumar’s "piyoge to maroge" quip in the aftermath of the Saran hooch tragedy and criticized the latter for making a fuss over NHRC taking cognizance of the matter.
Rai also alleged that Kumar has been soft on "anti-national activities going on in Bihar" and cited the example of Kashmir having been mentioned as a separate country in a school examination question paper to buttress his point.
Taking a dig at the JD(U) leader for repeatedly saying the BJP had deviated from the inclusiveness exemplified by former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Rai said "he should read a few poems of Atal ji. He will learn what the leader stood for".