Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaking in the Rajya Sabha, in New Delhi on February 8, 2022. (IANS)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaking in the Rajya Sabha, in New Delhi on February 8, 2022. (IANS)

Congress cannot think beyond dynasty: Modi in Rajya Sabha

New Delhi, February 8, 2022

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday came down heavily on the Congress, saying that it could never think beyond its "dynasty", while praising NCP leader Sharad Pawar and the TMC for attending the all-party meeting on Covid-19.

Replying to the debate in the Rajya Sabha on the motion of thanks to the President for his address to the joint sitting of both houses of Parliament on February 1, Modi said that during the all-party meet convened to review the Covid pandemic situation, the NCP and TMC turned up but not the Congress.

Modi went on to say that he wants to express his "gratitude" to Sharad Pawar who attended the meeting despite the Congress boycotting it.

While praising the NCP supremo, the Prime Minister tried to divide the Opposition and isolate the Congress as the former is part of the government in Maharashtra.

Without taking names, he said that some people need introspection as doing politics during the pandemic and trying to convince others to skip the meeting is incorrect.

He said that the problem with the Congress is they cannot think beyond the dynasty.

"It has to be accepted that biggest threat to democracy of the country is the dynastic parties and when a family is the considered supreme in any party, then the talent is the first casuality." he said.

On Monday, too, Modi had attacked the Congress and its leader Rahul Gandhi in the Lok Sabha, stating that the party had not lost its arrogance despite being out of power for so long.

Modi also launched an attack on the Congress' "historic" track record in Goa, which is set to vote its new assembly on February 14.

This year is an important year for Goa which is celebrating 60 years of its Independence.

"Our friends from Congress must be listening and people of Goa should definitely listen to what I want to say," Modi said and suggested how the then Congress government could have utilized Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel's strategy for Hyderabad or Junagarh to bring in Goa - which was under Portuguese rule till 1961 - into the Indian Union. Then Goa would not have been under foreign rule for 15 years after India got Independence, he said.

"The media reports from that time show us how the then Prime Minister Pandit Nehru was worried most about his image at international level. He (Nehru) had thought that attacking the imperial government of Goa would damage his image as a global, peace leader," Modi said.

"Hence, when the satyagrahis were facing bullets from the foreign tyrant rulers, India's first Prime Minister refused to send the Indian Army for liberating the land which is very much a part of India. The Prime Minister refused to help the satyagrahis then," the Prime Minister said, and reminded the people of Goa, "This is the kind of atrocity that Congress heaped on Goa because of which it gained independence 15 years later. Goa's many young freedom fighters lost their lives, many suffered lathi charges."

Congress members in the House had walked out by then. Modi said, "It would have been good if the friends from Congress were here as I am reminding them of what Nehru said on August 15, 1955 from the ramparts of the Red Fort. 'Nobody should be under the false impression that we are set to take military action in Goa. There is no Indian Army anywhere near Goa. By creating chaotic conditions, people from inside (Goa) want to create a situation where we would be forced to send an army, we will not send in our army. We want a peaceful negotiation'."

Modi also reminded the house how Nehru had spoken about the Satyagrahis from India going to Goa in a sarcastic tonem saying "if they want to call themselves as Satyagrahis, they should abide by the principles. Satyagrahis do not need an army; they don't demand an army."

"This is what Congress did to Goa. People of Goa will never forget it," Modi said.

Taunting the Congress on its claims of "freedom of expression" being trampled, Modi said, "I want to expose their claims with an example of Mangeshkar family that hails from Goa."

The Prime Minister recalled an incident narrated by Pandit Hrudaynath Mangeshkar, brother of Lata Mangeshkar, who passed away two days ago. Hridaynath Mangeshkar was thrown out of his job at AIR for composing a patriotic poem penned by V. D. Savarkar.

"Mangeshkar had said in an interview, Savarkar had warned him of consequences and yet he went ahead and composed it," Modi said, adding, "He was thrown out of his job within eight days."

This is what was done to a son from Goa, he said and recounted other names who also "bore the brunt of talking against or disagreeing with a particular family."

IANS

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