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Day After Terror Comment, Siddaramaiah Does U-Turn, Says Was Referring to Hindutva Terror

The chief minister’s statement led to a furore on Wednesday. The BJP had launched an all-out attack on the Congress calling it a party that patronises terrorism and harbours extremist elements.

D P Satish | CNN-News18dp_satish

Updated:January 11, 2018, 12:26 PM IST
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Day After Terror Comment, Siddaramaiah Does U-Turn, Says Was Referring to Hindutva Terror
File photo of Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah. (Photo: Deepa Balakrishnan, Network18)
Bengaluru: It seems the “terrorism” debate has gone out of hands of both Congress and BJP in Karnataka. A day after chief minister Siddaramaiah dropped a bomb by calling BJP and RSS terrorist organisations, he has done a sudden U-turn.

Speaking to media persons at MM Hills near Mysore, Siddaramaiah clarified that he was referring to Hindutva terrorism.

“What I said is BJP and RSS are spreading Hindutva terrorism for political gains. In my opinion, whoever spread hate and incites violence is a terrorist,” said Siddaramaiah.

The chief minister’s statement led to a furore on Wednesday. The BJP had launched an all-out attack on the Congress calling it a party that patronises terrorism and harbours extremist elements.

The firebrand BJP MP and BS Yeddyurappa’s close confidante Shobha Karandlaje has refused to lay down her arms even after Congress’s decision not to precipitate the matter further.

Speaking to News18, she said: "Entire country knows Congress’s link to terrorism. They gave birth to Khalistan movement and created Bhindranwale who killed Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. The same party created LTTE. The LTTE got Rajiv Gandhi assassinated. Even after all these tragic incidents. Congress is still soft on terrorism”.

Some Congress leaders had earlier called Shobha a terrorist, who has been allegedly inciting violence in the name of Hindutva.

Several BJP and RSS sympathisers and workers are now demanding that they should be arrested by the Siddaramaiah government to prove the 'terrorist' charge against them.

BJP state spokesman S Prakash said: “If we are terrorists the government must arrest us. Not arresting us means either the government is wrong or it is helping the terrorists. Only a mad man can call BJP and RSS terrorists. We will continue our protest. It is not acceptable”.

Fearing negative publicity, the Congress strategists have decided to play down the “terror” comments and focus on previous BJP government’s scams and failures.

On Wednesday, addressing a rally at Holalkere town in Chitradurga district, BJP President Amit Shah accused the Congress government in the state of being “anti-Hindu”.

"The Siddaramaiah government is doing vote bank politics, it is an anti-Hindu government," he said.

The Karnataka CM hit back and accused the BJP, as well as the RSS and Bajrang Dal, of harbouring extremist elements.

“The government will not leave those who disturb peace, we will not tolerate it,” Siddaramaiah told reporters. “It does not matter if it is the SDPI or the Bajrang Dal, whatever organisation it is, we will not tolerate it,” he said.

Karnataka is the only southern state where the BJP had been in power and hopes to wrest the state from the Congress in the upcoming polls.
| Edited by: Puja Menon
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