Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday accused the BJP and the RSS of ignoring the invocations of ‘Hey Ram’ and ‘Jai Siyaram’, which acknowledges both Lord Ram and Goddess Sita.
Mr Gandhi was addressing a corner meeting organised on the arrival of his Bharat Jodo Yatra at Nahardi in Jhalawar district. He later proceeded for the night halt at the Khel Sankul.
“The people of the BJP and RSS, learn to live your lives by the ideals of Lord Ram. And listen carefully, you will have to say ‘Hey Ram’ and ‘Jai Siyaram’,” he said. Earlier, he said the ‘Jai Siyaram’ slogan was used in the entire country.
“Can Ram exist without Sita… the question does not arise. Without Sita, there cannot be Ram and without Ram there cannot be Sita,” he said. “Then why have the BJP and the RSS removed maa Sita from their slogans. Why don’t they ever say Jai Siyaram?” “It’s okay if you want to say Jai Shri Ram. Do so. But the RSS people will have to say Jai Siyaram and they cannot insult mother Sita,” he said.
The Congress leader also targeted the BJP and the RSS over the slogan ‘Hey Ram’.
“There is another slogan that Gandhiji used to say. That is probably the most beautiful slogan… Hey Ram! This is the slogan having the deepest meaning. I want to tell you the meaning of Hey Ram. These are words that Mahatma Gandhi said after being shot. Hey Ram, Hey Ram, Hey Ram,” he said.
“Today, I want to tell you the depth of that slogan and the thinking of Gandhiji. Hey Ram means Lord Ram.
He said Lord Ram respected everyone and had no hatred towards anyone.
“Lord Ram had a thought, he had a feeling in his heart, he had a way of life. He used to respect everyone. He didn’t hate anyone. He loved everyone and hugged everyone. We call that feeling Hey Ram. When we say Hey Ram, we decide that we will live our life by the ideals Lord Ram had. This is the meaning of Hey Ram,” he said.
The people of RSS have forgotten this, he said.
“They never say Jai Siyaram, Sita has been removed and they never chant Hey Ram as they do not believe in the ideals of Lord Ram,” Mr Gandhi added.
Because if they did, they would not have “spread hatred”, he said.
“I want to tell the people of RSS, you should understand Lord Ram, understand his ideals, his way of life. He only talked about love, about brotherhood, about respect. Didn’t talk about hatred, about violence.”
Mr Gandhi urged the crowd to ask the people of RSS and BJP to chant ‘Jai Siyaram’ and ‘Hey Ram’ whenever they meet them.
Mr Gandhi also targeted the Centre government over demonetisation and Goods and Services Tax (GST).
“Demonetisation and faulty GST are not laws. They are weapons to hurt the poor, small and micro businessmen. Their aim is to provide benefit to the billionaires of India by snatching it from small shopkeepers, small and medium businessmen,” he said.
Several leaders including Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Congress state president Govind Singh Dotasra were present on the stage.
Mr Gandhi said the true ascetics (tapasvi) are farmers and labourers of the country, but the BJP government is attacking them.
“The Narendra Modi-led government at the Centre and wherever there are BJP governments in (states), they are closing all avenues of employment one after the other. This is creating a fear in the country and BJP people are turning this fear into hatred. That is why we started this journey,” he said.
On inflation, he said, the prices of LPG cylinder, petrol and diesel have shot-up drastically and “we all know that our mothers and sisters suffer the most due to inflation”.