Sonia slams RSS over terrorism, expresses concern at Kashmir deaths at AICC session (Round Up)

November 2nd, 2010 - 6:02 pm ICT by ANI  

Sonia Gandhi New Delhi, Nov.2 (ANI): Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday touched upon a host of issues, including Jammu and Kashmir, terrorism, price rise, Naxalism, the Women’s Reservation Bill and the party’s preparations for the next round of state assembly elections, besides targeting the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh and praising the Ayodhya verdict. Addressing the issue of Jammu and Kashmir during a day-long session of the All India Congress Committee (AICC) here, Gandhi expressed her anguish over the deaths of youngsters during recent protests in the Kashmir Valley. “I speak for all of us when I express my anguish at the loss of young lives in Kashmir. I share their grief. Their loss is a national loss. The whole generation has seen nothing but violence and conflict,” she said. She noted that a “new situation” had emerged in the state and appealed to all dissatisfied sections to trust the government and give peace a chance so that the future of next generations could be built. Stating that priority should be on development of Jammu and Kashmir, Sonia said: “There has to be a meaningful political dialogue with all parties and all region,” she said. Speaking on the issue of terrorism, she said: “The threat is for real, and, we will never relax our vigil against terrorism”. In a veiled reference to Pakistan, Sonia said it was “crystal clear” as to who was behind the attacks on November 26, 2008 in Mumbai. On Naxalism, Sonia said while firm police action was necessary, there was a need for emphasis on socio-economic development. Sonia also spoke on the issue of inflation, as she said food prices have come down, but there was a “need to bring these down further”, and put the onus on States to deliver in this area.On the issue of women reservations, she said the Congress party is committed to introducing the Women’s Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha soon. It may be noted that the Women Reservation Bill, seeking 33 per cent reservation for women in the Parliament, was earlier passed in the Rajya Sabha with the main Opposition party Bharatiya Janata Party extending its support to the government proposed Bill. Gandhi also criticised communal incidents in the country, saying that the Allahabad High Court ruling on the Ayodhya title suit “in no way - in no way- condones the demolition of the Babri Masjid on December 6, 1992. This was shameful- a criminal act - for which the perpetrators must be brought to justice”. “We all remember how tense the country was in the days prior to the judgement. It is a tribute to our people that they ensured that peace and harmony prevailed,” Gandhi added. She said: “The broader message for us all is that our fight against communalism of all kinds, against fanaticism of all types has to continue unabated. This is a political struggle for a secular India.”While expressing her deep concern over rising prices, Sonia said that though inflation had come down to an extent, still it needed to be further brought down. She said the states were responsible for operating the Public Distribution System (PDS) and also should take action against black marketeers, hoarders and speculators. She wanted partymen in opposition-ruled states to take the lead in pressurising the governments there to take action in this regard. Meanwhile, what started with Rahul Gandhi’s description of Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) being as “fundamentalist” as the banned Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) a few days ago, was given full fledged support at the daylong All India Congress Committee’s day-long session here. The Congress today went full throttle in attacking the RSS and its sister organisations, accusing them of being involved in terrorism while maintaining the view that the Allahabad High Court’s Ayodhya verdict did not condone the 1992 Babri mosque demolition. Sonia Gandhi during her speech today said that the Congress party and the governments led by her party will “forcefully” resist attempts by anyone to abuse religion for political gains. On the issue of Allahabad High Court’s Ayodhya verdict, Sonia sought to clarify that it in “no way condones” the demolition of the disputed structure on December 6,1992 and described the mosque demolition as a “shameful, criminal act”, adding that “all those responsible must be brought to justice.” Senior Congress leader and Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee today stated through a AICC statement that “recent revelations through detailed investigations have exposed the true character of RSS and its sister organisations. The investigations indicate the involvement of its members in terrorist activities.” While justifying the inclusion of references to the RSS, Mr. Mukherjee said, “The RSS organisation is to be exposed. Their links with terrorist activities which have been recently highlighted through the revelations are to be brought in.”However, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, meanwhile, hailed the role of Sonia Gandhi as the “longest serving” party President for 12 years and her efforts to bring the party to power at the Centre for a second continuous term. Dr. Singh expressed confidence that under her leadership the party would continue to be in power for a long time.

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