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Just a Photo-Op, Says Congress as PM Narendra Modi Gears Up to Lead BJP MPs in India-Wide Fast Today

The opposition has dubbed the token fast as a “farce”, alleging that the second part of the Budget Session was washed out because of BJP lawmakers.

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Updated:April 12, 2018, 9:25 AM IST
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Just a Photo-Op, Says Congress as PM Narendra Modi Gears Up to Lead BJP MPs in India-Wide Fast Today
Prime Minister Narendra Modi along with Ananth Kumar, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and other MPs leave after the BJP Parliamentary Party Meeting at Parliament Library Building (PLB) in New Delhi on April 6. (PTI)
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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lead BJP lawmakers across the country in a 24-hour fast on Thursday to protest against the washout of the last session of Parliament.

The opposition has dubbed the token fast as a “farce”, alleging that the second part of the Budget Session was washed out because of BJP lawmakers.

"To expose the Congress for its undemocratic style of functioning, and pursuing divisive politics and anti-development agenda, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi will observe day-long fast on April 12 while continuing his routine official work. He will be joined by BJP MPs who will also observe a day-long fast and hold ‘dharnas’ across India," a BJP statement.

BJP leaders all over the country, including Union ministers and BJP chief Amit Shah, will join the Prime Minister in his day-long symbolic fast. I&B Minister Smriti Irani will fast in Amethi, Home Minister Rajnath Singh in Lucknow, Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari in Nagpur, Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad in Patna, Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi in Ranchi and Environment Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan in Delhi.

The second part of the Budget Session was a washout and was dominated by the TDP's withdrawal from the ruling NDA coalition and its demand for a special status for Andhra Pradesh.

The Congress supported the TDP's demand for special status.

"Frustrated of being out of power and seeing its popularity dipping to lowest level, the Congress in a planned way is conspiring to spread fear in the society and trying to create an atmosphere of confusion in the country. By inciting hatred and creating rift in the society, the Congress party is disturbing peace and harmony of the country. The entire Budget Session of Parliament which was meant for discussion on important issues related to common man was disrupted by the Congress," the BJP statement read.

Hitting back, the Congress termed the fast as nothing but a "photo-opportunity" and "drama". It also held that the BJP and its allies were responsible for the disruption of Parliament.

"They don't allow discussion on no-trust motion, bank fraud cases, Rafale deal, on farmers' crisis, CBSE leak and SSC scam," said Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala. "They are letting SC/ST Act be diluted... they are also being step-motherly towards south Indian states, they didn't allow discussion on Special status for Andhra Pradesh," he added.

Surjewala said the government wasted 250 hours of Parliament.

"If they are so helpless and weak then they should give up their posts and take retirement," he said, adding: "This is not time for the PM to sit on fast, this is time for his retirement. If not now, then after 2019 they will have to retire."

(With agency inputs)
| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
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