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‘If you threaten to defame the country…’: Smriti Irani’s warning to Rahul Gandhi over SDPI’s support to Congress

Union minister Smriti Irani on Wednesday targeted Rahul Gandhi over the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) extending its support to the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, saying if anyone tried to defame the nation, people would not tolerate or forgive them.

Irani said that Congress was seeking support from terrorist organisations who opposed the abrogation of Article 370A and asked for proof of Balakot air strikes. (File)

Speaking at a rally to support BJP candidate VD Sharma in Panna, Irani claimed that Congress was seeking support from terrorist organisations who opposed the abrogation of Article 370A and asked for proof of Balakot air strikes.

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“Today the kind of politics I am witnessing, I have heard that today he (Rahul Gandhi) is filing nomination from Wayanad. Against him, our Kerala unit is fighting the election. They (Congress) are now asking for support from terrorist organisations. They are these people who opposed the abrogation of Article 370A in the Parliament. These are the people who asked the soldiers to present proof of air strikes in Balakot. Today these people threaten the country for power. I want to say this to Rahul Gandhi that ‘tumne agar desh ko kalankit karne ke liye dhamkaya toh yeh desh jhelta toh nhi, lekin agar chedha jaata hai toh yeh desh chordta bhi nhi (If you threaten to defame the country, it will not tolerate and won’t forgive you),” Irani said.

According to a PTI report, SDPI state president Muvattupuzha Ashraf Moulavi extended support to Congress and said, “Our Constitution is being challenged. The BJP is bringing in laws to provide citizenship on the basis of religion. Uniform Civil Code is planned, which will affect the diversity of the country. We will support the Congress-led UDF which is fighting the BJP at the national level.”

The SDPI has long faced scrutiny over its alleged connections with the now-banned Popular Front of India (PFI), a group designated as a terrorist organisation by authorities. The Union home ministry declared the PFI and its associated outfits as “Unlawful Association”, citing threats to national security and public order.

While the SDPI has distanced itself from the PFI, concerns persist about potential ideological and operational overlaps between the two entities. Authorities remain vigilant, closely monitoring the activities of the SDPI and any potential remnants of the banned PFI network.

Irani further said that Congress had a habit of running away due to the fear of losing.

She said, “I am from the region where a dynasty ruled for five decades, where having Tilak on the forehead and taking the name of Lord Ram was a kind of political curse. I am from the region ‘Jahan Hath Ke Sath Cycle Bhi Chalti Thi, Hath Ko Saaf Kiya Gaya Cycle Puncture Kar Di Gyi’… Congress has a habit of running away out of fear of losing, ask this to the people of Amethi.”

Irani also congratulated BJP leaders in MP for the saffron party’s significant support in the state.

She said, “Arrogance is exhibited by those who are born in political families and consider power their political birthright. It is also displayed by those who inherit power as a legacy. Today, as a party worker, I congratulate you (VD Sharma) and other party workers for your hard work and for making BJP a household name in Madhya Pradesh.”

Irani is likely to visit Wayanad to support NDA candidate K Surendran on Thursday, where he will file his nomination.

Amit Shah slams Congress over SDPI support

On Tuesday, during a roadshow in Karnataka’s Ramanagara, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, addressing the public said, “On one hand there are blasts in Bengaluru, on the other hand, I just got the news that SDPI has supported Congress. If this is true then can the people of Karnataka remain safe under the Congress government?”

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