Rahul Gandhi’s statement vote-bank politics: VHP

Friday, December 17, 2010

PANAJI - The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) Friday condemned Rahul Gandhi’s alleged comments, according to US diplomatic cables released by Wikileaks, that radicalised Hindu groups posed a threat to India.

“Rahul Gandhi’s statement is a symbol of vote-bank politics which the Congress is playing. They are not asking for death penalty for terrorists like Afzal Guru and Ajmal Kasab, but they are casting allegations on Hindu saints and organisations,” VHP vice president Ashok Chowgule said.

“They are only trying to defame the Hindu organisations for electoral gain,” Chowgule said here, adding that the subject of Hindu or saffron terror would be exhaustively discussed at a conclave in Goa which will be held in January.

According to diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks, Gandhi, son of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and a Lok Sabha member, made his remarks last year to the US ambassador Timothy Roemer.

He reportedly told Roemer that though “there was evidence of some support for (Islamic terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba) among certain elements in India’s indigenous Muslim community, the bigger threat may be the growth of radicalised Hindu groups”.

Britain’s Guardian newspaper also quoted Gandhi as telling the ambassador that “the risk of a ‘homegrown’ extremist front, reacting to terror attacks coming from Pakistan or from Islamist groups in India, was a growing concern and one that demanded constant attention”.

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