Bengaluru: Rahul Gandhi directs party leaders to toe soft Hindutva principles


Congress president Rahul Gandhi will launch the first leg of his party's poll campaign in Karnataka on February 10, the state unit chief of the party, G Parameshwara, said here today.

According to reports, Siddaramaiah was accompanied by several other senior party leaders from the state.

Meeting the media persons, the only one Congress Chief Minister of Southern India denied that there was any anti-incumbency factor for the party and put a courageous face that he would be able to retain power in the state.

Asked about the BJP's attack on him on Hindutva issues, Siddaramaiah said: "The BJP has no issues. We will concentrate only on the issue of development and we will highlight what we have done for them and what Central Govt hasn't done for the betterment of Karnataka".

Siddaramaiah had on Wednesday alleged that the BJP, the RSS and the Bajrang Dal have terrorists within their organisations, a charge rubbished by the saffron party.

According to Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, the upcoming Assembly polls in the state would be a battle between two ideologies - communalism and secularism. "And (PM ) Modi may also raise the same issue because they have no issues here to talk about", he said caustically. Alleging that Rao has said BJP was like a terrorist organisation, it said this was "baseless, malicious, derogatory, defamatory and false". "Being a Hindu myself, I follow it with humanity", Siddaramaiah said. They should be booked "under the said provisions of law and action taken for the penal offences", the complaint added. Hindu dharma means humane Hindu and not hatred.

Rahul met the senior leaders separately and got their views on the current political situation in the state, before meeting the entire delegation and asking them to work together.

The meeting came in the wake of a verbal duel between Siddaramaiah and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Amit Shah.

Siddaramaiah had called the BJP and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) "Hindutva extremists", while Shah had termed his government in Karnataka "anti-Hindu". Rahul asked Congress leaders from Karnataka to focus more on booth committees and strengthening the party from that level.