Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi has taken on Prime Minister Narendra Modi for “quoting” from the Bible at a poll rally and saying nothing about the nuns harassed by “goons” belonging to his party during a train journey through BJP-ruled Uttar Pradesh recently.
“I suppose this was because the elections in Kerala are around the corner. Because I didn’t hear a single word about the sisters who were harassed in Jhansi,” she said, a day after PM Modi targeted the ruling LDF over the gold smuggling scam in a poll rally in Palakkad, saying the CPI(M)-led government “betrayed” the people, just as “Judas did to Jesus for a few pieces of silver”.
Addressing an election rally in Thrissur, Kerala, Gandhi said there was nothing more hollow than quoting from the Bible “to sow seeds of division and hatred in the country”.
She said she has worked for many years with the nuns belonging to Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity in Delhi, who taught her how to clean the wounds of the destitutes.
“I worked for many years with my sisters in Mother Teresa’s order of Missionaries of Charity. I was a volunteer at their homes in Delhi,” Gandhi said, while narrating her experience as a volunteer with the sisters of Mother Teresa’s order.
“They showed me the dignity of service. And today when I meet them often, they tell me of how they are persecuted,” she said.
Hitting out at the Prime Minister, the Congress general secretary said she found it very interesting when PM Modi “quoted from the Holy Bible”.
“There is nothing more farcical than quoting the lines of Jesus on a political stage and unleashing the prosecution on those whose lives are spent serving the poor,” Gandhi said.
She said it was Jesus Christ who exposed the tyranny of a ruler whose greed and selfishness ravaged his people.
Slamming the Centre, she said everybody knows how the central government, headed by PM Modi, has “divided our own country in the name of religion”.
The Prime Minister, while attacking the Left government on the gold smuggling case allegedly involving the former principal secretary to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, had remarked about LDF – “Judas. Judas betrayed Lord Christ for a few pieces of silver. LDF has betrayed Kerala for a few pieces of gold.”
PM Modi sought to link the betrayal of Jesus by Judas in exchange for money to the gold smuggling case in the rally held during the Holy Week being observed by the Christian community.
During Holy Week, Christians recall the events leading up to Jesus’ death by crucifixion, his betrayal by Judas during the week in exchange for money, and according to their faith, Jesus’ Resurrection.
Judas was one of the 12 Apostles of Jesus.
On Monday, Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal had dismissed as wrong the charges that two nuns and two postulants belonging to a Kerala-based congregation were attacked during a train journey via Uttar Pradesh recently and alleged that Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan was “making false statements” on the issue.
Vijayan on Tuesday dubbed Goyal’s statement as “shameful” and an “utter lie”.
The alleged incident occurred at Jhansi railway station on March 19 and had its echoes in poll-bound Kerala last week, with Vijayan taking it up with the Centre and Home Minister Amit Shah promising strong action.