New Delhi: The Congress today termed the Union Minister Nitin Gadkari's latest comments on castesim as a direct attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his party BJP.
Speaking at programme in Pune on Sunday, the Transport Minister said that there was no place for casteism in his area because of his "warning" that anybody talking about caste will be "thrashed" by him.
The senior BJP leader said, "We do not believe in any casteism...I do not know what do you have but there is no place for castiesm in our five districts because I have warned everybody that if someone talks about caste, I will thrash him".
Reacting to Gadkari’s comments, the Madhya Pradesh Congress said that the Union Minister has once again ‘directly attacked’ Narendra Modi and the BJP.
“Gadkari Ji has spoken out against the politics of religion - a policy followed by the BJP”, the Congress tweeted.
"When will you thrash those who ask for votes in the name of Hanuman Ji's religion?", the Congress asked.
गडकरी ने फिर किया मोदी और भाजपा पर सीधा हमला :— MP Congress (@INCMP) February 11, 2019
भाजपा नेता नितिन गडकरी ने भाजपा की मूल राजनीति के ख़िलाफ़ बयान दिया है, कहा- कोई जातिवाद की बात करेगा तो मै उसकी पिटाई कर दूंगा..!
हनुमान जी की जाति बताकर वोट माँगने वालों की पिटाई कब करेंगे..? https://t.co/LIsg8bG7l3
The Congress’ reference of Hanuman Ji came in the wake of recent controversial statements made by several BJP leaders to determine the caste of the Hindu deity.
The debate on the 'caste' identity of the Hindu god was sparked off by UP CM Yogi Adityanath, who had claimed that Lord Hanuman was a Dalit.
“Lord Hanuman was a forest dweller, deprived and a Dalit. Bajrang Bali worked to connect all Indian communities together, from north to south and east to west,” Adityanath had said at a rally in Rajasthan's Alwar district in November.
Then BJP Member of Legislative Council (MLC) in Uttar Pradesh, Bukkal Nawab had called Lord Hanuman a Muslim by saying "I believe that Lord Hanuman was a Muslim. That is why the names of the people in Islam are almost similar to Lord Hanuman, whether it is Rehman, Ramzan, Farman, Zeeshan and Qurban."
Uttar Pradesh Minister for Religious Affairs Laxmi Narayan Chaudhary said that the Hindu deity belonged to the Jat community.
Justifying his statement, he said, "I think Hanuman ji was a Jat, because upon seeing someone being troubled a Jat also jumps in even without knowing the issue or the people."
As per media reports, some people in the saffron party are putting forth Nitin Gadkari's name as the Prime Ministerial candidate in the upcoming general elections.