Refrain from making irresponsible statements, Modi tells leaders

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NEW DELHI: BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi on Tuesday reacted to controversial statements by leaders like Pravin Togadia and Giriraj Singh.

“Petty statements by those claiming to be BJP’s well wishers are deviating the campaign from the issues of development & good governance. I disapprove any such irresponsible statement and appeal to those making them to kindly refrain from doing so,” Modi tweeted.

While Togadia had reportedly called for the forcible eviction of a Muslim family from a Hindu-dominated locality, Bihar BJP leader Giriraj Singh had said that those who oppose Modi should go to Pakistan as there will be no place for them in India.

On Saturday evening, Togadia joined a group of VHP and Bajrang Dal members on a street protest in Bhavnagar outside a house purchased by a Muslim businessman near Meghani Circle.

While saffron groups have been regularly organizing ‘Ram Dhuns’ and ‘Ram Darbars’ to thwart such deals, Togadia went a step further by asking the protesters to take complete control of the house and put a ‘Bajrang Dal’ board on it.

Togadia then told the gathering that there were two ways to stop such deals. One is to pressurize the state government to bring in Disturbed Areas Act in Bhavnagar, which prevents inter-community sale of immovable property. The second is to take forcible possession of the house and fight a legal battle later which will go on for years.
He gave the Muslim occupant 48 hours to vacate the house. “If he does not relent, go with stones, tyres and tomatoes to his office. There is nothing wrong in it. Killers of Rajiv Gandhi have not been hanged … there is nothing to fear and the case will go on,” Togadia told the charged-up gathering.

“I have done it in the past and Muslims have lost both property and money,” he had said.

The Election Commission on Monday evening directed the district administration of Bhavnagar to file an FIR against Togadia for his hate speech.

Gujarat’s chief electoral officer Anita Karwal said, “We have inquired about the Bhavnagar incident and have directed the district administration to file an FIR in the matte

Bihar leader Giriraj Singh, has also been booked for his comment that those who oppose the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate have a place in Pakistan and not in India.

The Congress was quick to reject Modi’s appeal and called it ‘crocodile tears’.

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