New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on June 26 broke his silence over the recent mob lynching in Jharkhand saying that the incident has pained him but asked if it is fair to call the state ‘a hub of lynching.’
Speaking in the Rajya Sabha on the Motion of Thanks to the President’s address, Modi said, ‘The lynching in Jharkhand has pained me. It has saddened others too. But, some here in the Rajya Sabha are calling Jharkhand a hub of lynching. Is this fair? Why are they insulting a whole state. None of us have the right to insult the state of Jharkhand.’
Earlier on June 23, Tabrez Ansari succumbed to injuries after being beaten by a mob. Videos of the incident showed Ansari tied to a pole and being forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’ and ‘Jai Hanuman’.
Congress Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad had raised the issue of lynchings in the House and said that Jharkhand has become a lynching hub where Muslims were targeted every week.
Further taking a jibe at Azad, Modi said that it seems he ‘is having blurred vision’ and is ‘seeing everything from political spectacles.’ He further quoted a famous couplet: “Umar bhar Ghalib yahi Bhool karta Raha, Dhool Chehre pe Thi, aur aina saaf karta raha”.
Addressing another pressing issue – death’s due to Acute Encephalitis Syndrome – Modi said that the deaths in Bihar are unfortunate and ‘a matter of shame for us’ adding that ‘we have to take this seriously.’ The PM further assured that he is ‘in constant touch with the state Govt and I am sure we will collectively come out of this crisis soon’.
Modi said that in order to help the poor ‘get the best quality and affordable medical treatment’, it is important ‘to strengthen Ayushman Bharat’.
The PM also lashed out at the Congress for calling Congress’ defeat ‘India’s defeat’: ‘Did India lose in Wayanad? Did India lose in Rae Bareli? Did India lose in Trivandrum, what about Amethi? What kind of argument is this? If Congress loses then does that mean India has lost? There is a limit to arrogance. Congress could not win a single seat in 17 states.’
Sharpening his attack on the grand old party, PM Modi said that he was ‘saddened when some leaders said — the BJP and allies won the elections but the country lost and democracy lost. These statements are really unfortunate. Why should we question decision of voters?’
Modi also said that instead of blaming EVMs, people should rather ‘appreciate how our electoral processes have improved over the years’ saying that ‘in 1950s polling process took long time to complete. Violence and booth capturing were common in some places. Now, news is about rising voter turnout. This is a healthy signal.’
‘There have been so many elections with EVMs and parties that are present in the Rajya Sabha have got opportunities to govern in different states after elections were held through EVMs. Then, why question EVMs today?,’ PM Modi said.
The PM urged parties to give constructive suggestions and said that ‘we are open to all suggestions, we don’t believe only we have all the intellect’.
Also watch: Another Death By Lynching: Will Modi 2.0 Deliver ‘Sabka Vishwas’?