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Modi is Modern-Day Aurangzeb, Has Destroyed Scores of Temples in Varanasi, Says Congress' Sanjay Nirupam

Sanjay Nirupam claimed that whatever Aurangzeb could not do in his time, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is doing today.


Updated:May 8, 2019, 9:52 AM IST
Sanjay Nirupam
File photo of Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam.

Varanasi: In comments that are likely to trigger a massive controversy, Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam has called Prime Minister Narendra Modi the moder-day incarnation of Mughal ruler Aurangzeb.

In Varanasi to campaign for the Congress, Nirupam claimed that Modi is the modern-day version of Aurangzeb as it was on his instructions that “scores of temples were destroyed for the sake of a corridor in the city”.

He was referring to the demolition of several small buildings and structures as part of the clearance to build the Kashi Vishwanath Corridor in Varanasi, as part of which many temples were also allegedly destroyed.

The former Mumbai chief for the Congress, known for his caustic remarks, further claimed that Modi has also instructed that a ‘fine’ or ‘fee’ of Rs 550 be charged from disciples who want to visit the Baba Vishwanath temple. “This is proof that whatever Aurangzeb could not do, Modi is doing today,” he said.

“At one time, Aurangzeb came to the streets of Kashi to destroy our temples, even then the residents had saved her temples and protested,” he said, adding that a similar movement will take place now.

This is not the first time that Aurangzeb has been dragged into the political dogfight. In fact, his name seems to crop up every election campaign. Last year, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala had likened PM Modi to the Mughal ruler, while a Rajasthan BJP leader had compared Congress chief Rahul Gandhi to the 17th century emperor.

Polling in the Varanasi constituency will be held in the last and seventh phase on May 19. The Prime Minister is seeking re-election from the seat, where he had polled nearly 5.8 lakh seats.

After much speculation that Priyanka Gandhi will fight against him, the Congress gave a ticket to Ajay Rai again, despite him only coming third last time around with less than 80,000 votes.

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