The BJP has promised to send Christian voters of Nagaland to Jerusalem every year if it came to power in the state, where 9 out of 10 people follow Christianity. The state goes to polls on 27 February, but political parties have begun desperately wooing voters with freebies.
The BJP’s vision document for the elections in Nagaland promises to send around 50 people ‘every year, through lucky draw’ on a ‘Holy Land Jerusalem Tour.’ The tour will be free of cost with the state government bearing the expense.
The BJP’s offer has been prepared in response to the Congress’s manifesto, which too promises to send local population to Jerusalem at a subsidised cost. The vision document that the BJP is releasing on Thursday (today) has exposed its glaring hypocrisy once again. Not so long ago, the BJP government led by Narendra Modi had scrapped the subsidy on Haj for Muslim pilgrims traveling to Mecca every year.
Justifying the BJP government’s decision to do away with the subsidy for Hajj pilgrims, Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi had said that the move was a part of the government’s aim to “empower minorities without appeasement”. The minister had gone on to say, “Development with dignity is what we believe in. The Haj subsidy will be used for educating girls.”
Questions may be asked if the BJP deems the Christian population of Nagaland less dignified than Muslims across India.
The BJP’s hypocrisy and biases against India’s Muslims isn’t just confined to its inconsistent stand on Hajj and the Holy trip to Jerusalem. The party has exposed itself even with its stand on cow slaughter. While its supporters have killed many innocent Muslim in the guise of protecting cows and its chief minister and union minister advised Muslims to go to Pakistan if they wanted to eat beef, the saffron party has categorically stated that it will not ban cow slaughter in the north-eastern states.
“(The) rules do not, at any point, ban cow slaughter. Though the rules do not say it, the justification for them can perhaps be traced to the direction of the Supreme Court, which passed an order to frame guidelines to prevent animals from being smuggled out of India for the Gadhimai Festival held in Nepal, where largescale animal sacrifice takes places, and to Bangladesh,” JA Lyngdoh, vice-president of Meghalaya BJP was quoted as saying.
Meghalaya, another state with more than 80% Christian population, too goes to polls on 27 February.
Taking a dig at BJP’s stand on cows, the AIMIM president, Asaduddin Owaisi, had said last year that BJP’s ‘hypocrisy’ was that in Uttar Pradesh cow was ‘mummy’ but ‘in the Northeast its yummy.’