Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge slammed Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Friday for announcing in poll-bound Tripura that the Ram temple will be ready by January 1, 2024, wondering in what capacity the BJP leader said so as he is neither the “pujari” nor the “mahant” of the shrine.
“Everyone has faith in god. But why did you make such an announcement, that too in the run-up to the (Tripura Assembly) polls? And when the (2024 Lok Sabha) election is also slated for May, you are saying the Ram temple will be inaugurated.
“Who are you to make such an announcement? Are you the pujari or the mahant of the Ram temple?” M Kharge said targeting Amit Shah.
“Let the mahant and the seers say it. You are a politician. Your job is to keep the country secure, ensure law and order, ensure that people get food and give the price for farmers’ produce. That is your job,” the Congress chief told a rally organised here as part of the opposition party’s “Bharat Jodo Yatra”.
Amit Shah announced on Thursday that the Ram temple in Ayodhya will be ready by January 1, 2024, the year of the Lok Sabha polls.
This is being seen by the political opponents of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as an indication that the temple may again be a cornerstone of the saffron party’s campaign in the next general election.
“Rahul baba, listen from Sabroom (Tripura) that a mammoth Ram mandir will be ready on January 1, 2024,” Amit Shah said, attacking Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who is leading the Bharat Jodo Yatra.
M Kharge addressed the rally in the presence of Rahul Gandhi and other Congress leaders, including Kumari Selja, Bhupinder Singh Hooda, K C Venugopal, Randeep Singh Surjewala, Shaktisinh Gohil, Kiran Choudhary, Digvijay Singh, Deepender Singh Hooda, D K Shivakumar and Udai Bhan.
The Congress chief also slammed the Centre over a host of issues, including inflation and unemployment, and accused the BJP of making tall promises during election time and going back on those words after coming to power.
He said there is rising inflation and unemployment in the country but the government does not seem to be bothered.
Mr Kharge said Rahul Gandhi has led the Bharat Jodo Yatra for more than 3,000 kilometres so far. The foot march reached Haryana’s Panipat from Uttar Pradesh on Thursday evening.
The Congress chief said they are seeing a “different Rahul” as he undertakes the journey from Kanyakumari to Kashmir on foot.
He said essential items of use have gone out of the common man’s reach because of the rising inflation.
“In 45 years, unemployment was never so high. Educated youngsters, including those with degrees in engineering, medicine and business management are without jobs, but the BJP government, (Prime Minister Narendra) Modiji and Amit Shahji are not worried about them.”
“They have no concern for youngsters, the economic condition or inflation … Only elections are on their mind,” M Kharge alleged.