NEW DELHI: BJP today accused Rahul Gandhi of "insulting" the nation for charging the government with suppressing students' voice in the JNU row and alleged that he was supporting "anti-national" forces and speaking the voice of LeT founder and terrorist Hafiz Sayeed.
The party said the Congress vice president's comments amounted to supporting those students who had allegedly raised slogans in favour of Pakistan and terrorists. "What kind of ideology is Rahul Gandhi supporting? The ideology that says 'Pakistan zindabad' and 'Bharat ki barbadi tak, jang rahegi jang rahegi' (Till the downfall of India, we will fight) is anti-national. His remakrs are an insult to the nation, our Constitution and legal system. It shows his mental bankruptcy.
"Rahul Gandhi and his friends are speaking in the voice LeT terrorist Hafiz Sayeed who had tweeted in support of anti-India event in JNU. It is an insult to our martyrs and armed forces who sacrifice their lives on the border and will boost the morale of anti-national forces," party national secretary Shrikant Shamra said.
He said Gandhi kept quiet when anti-India slogans were raised in JNU and when police took action then he rushed to JNU to use students as a tool for political benefits. "Congress spokespersons are on record questioning the lack of action after the event in JNU. But once legal action was taken, he is speaking the voice of Hafiz Sayeed. It shows how low the party can stoop to for political interests," said Sharma.
Taking a dig at Gandhi, BJP spokesperson Nalin Kohli said he had given a new definition to nationalism by attacking those who had suppressed anti-national voices. "These shouting anti-national slogans are new kind of nationalists in Rahul Gandhi's definition and the people who suppress these voices and take action are anti-nationals. This is the message he seems to be giving," he said.
Sharma said Rahul Gandhi should fight the political battle with BJP on development agenda and not use educational institutions for political purposes. "We condemn his actions. JNU has produced many intellectuals and bureaucrats. A handful of people there have given anti-India speeches. Law is taking its course. BJP will urge Congress to not insult our martyrs for political reason," he said.
Referring to the recent deaths of army personnel, he said it was unfortunate that while soldiers sacrificed their lives on the border, anti-India slogans were raised and terrorists hailed as martyrs in an institution like JNU. Another BJP spokesperson Sudhanshu Trivedi said efforts to give "ideological cover" to violence and anti-India activities cannot be allowed.
"The way foul language was used against the Prime Minister...a group of students is trying to damage the dignity of an institution like JNU in the name of cultural agitation," he said.Z