Every part of India belongs to every Indian: Rahul Gandhi (Lead)February 2nd, 2010 - 12:59 pm ICT by IANS
Patna, Feb 2 (IANS) Every part of India belongs to every Indian, Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi said Tuesday while hitting out at the Shiv Sena for its ‘Mumbai for Marathis’ slogan and asserted that he would not remain silent if migrant workers in Maharashtra were subjected to violence.
“India belongs to every Indian. Every part of India belongs to every Indian. All Indians have every right to go and work anywhere in the country,” Gandhi told reporters here on the last day of his two-day visit to Bihar.
The Shiv Sena, Gandhi said, was silent when National Security Guard (NSG) personnel from various parts of India fought Pakistani terrorists during the Nov 26-29, 2008 attacks in Mumbai
“In Mumbai, men in the NSG were from Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh and Maharashtra. At that time, they (Shiv Sena) were silent and did not say that those from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh should be taken out. India has to move forward and all have to be taken forward,” Gandhi said.
The remark comes a day after Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray said in the party mouthpiece Saamna that Gandhi had insulted 26/11 martyrs by only recognising soldiers from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
The Congress MP was, however, unfazed.
He said he was not interested in what Thackeray, his son Uddhav and the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray had to say.
“It may be their view… I also have my views but India is for Indians, there is no if and but,” Gandhi said.
He said he would not remain silent if migrant workers from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh were targeted in Maharashtra.
“I am not going to be silent if there will be violence against any one in the country,” he said.
Gandhi denied that the Congress-led Maharashtra government had not acted against perpetrators of violence against migrant workers in the state.
“The Maharashtra government has taken action against culprits,” he said.
Gandhi’s Bihar trip, aimed at galvanising the state Congress unit for the assembly elections later this year, comes in the midst of a row triggered by the Shiv Sena campaign for Mumbai only for Marathis. The rift in the saffron parivar has also widened with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and the Bharatiya Janata Party criticising the Shiv Sena for its exclusionist view.
Gandhi began his visit Monday with hundreds of Congress workers and common people welcoming him in Champaran, Darbhanga and Gaya.
Congress leaders said party workers were upbeat at his visit. Gandhi would be interacting with students at the Patna Women’s College later Tuesday. After that he would visit Bhagalpur and Kishanganj to meet party youth workers.
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