The Agrawal community on Monday slammed the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for "exploiting" the Ganga river issue for political purposes and not fulfilling its promise to clean up the holy river in the past over four years.
In a letter to Modi, Akhil Bharatiya Agrawal Sammelan (ABAS) National Secretary Summan R. Agrawal said that engineer-turned-environmentalist G.D. Agrawal died on October 9 after a 111-day-long protest for the cause of Ganga.
During his fast, he wrote three letters to Modi "but the government didn't feel important to respond" to them. But after Agrawal's death, Modi, all Ministers and the government tweeted about his great contribution to nature and environment.
"If the government is so anguished about Agarwal's death, why didn't the PM meet him at least once and accept his genuine demands, or at least, respond to any of his letters? Why does the Modi government show such hypocrisy and double standards," Agrawal asked.
She pointed out that in his letters to the Prime Minister, the late Agrawal expressed confidence that after Modi took power in 2014, concrete steps would be taken to clean up the Ganga but later realized that nothing was done in the past four-and-a-half years.
These expectations were raised after Modi focused his entire election agenda in 2014 on the issue of Maa Ganga and campaigning that Na main aaya hoo, Na hi bheja gaya hoon; Mujhe to Maa Ganga ne bulaya hai (I have neither come, nor beeen sent; I have been called by Mother Ganges).
"Why Maa Ganga didn't call this self-proclaimed son Narendra Modi after his rise to the throne as PM in 2014? Modi again realized he has a Maa Ganga only during Assembly elections of Uttar Pradesh in 2017," Agrawal said in her letter.
On the contrary, the late Agrawal's letters mentioned how former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had taken cognizance of his several fasts and decided to stop or cancel all activities in a major project for the sake of Ganga.
"I would like to ask the Modi government, why the Agrawal community is constantly being ignored over the years... What happened to your favourite election war-cry - Sabka Sath, Sabka Vika'? We, the Agrawal community, were expecting at least full state honours to (the late) Agarwal, the proud son of the community, but he was denied that too," said Agrawal.
She said the entire 10-crore strong Agrawal community was "feeling orphaned due to his death" and warned that they will remember and express their sentiments in the 2019 elections.