Thiruvananthapuram | Congress Working Committee member and MP Shashi Tharoor on Sunday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of shifting the political agenda every election year and alleged that the BJP-government at the Centre was unable to protect the nation's borders from Chinese encroachment.
The hard hitting accusations from the MP from Thiruvananthapuram came on the eve of the Ram Temple consecration ceremony at Ayodhya on Monday.
Tharoor said that Modi contested and won in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls in the name of development and in 2019 in the name of national security by ordering surgical strikes on Pakistan.
But now he cannot talk of development, following the problems caused to the public due to demonetisation nor can he raise the issue of national security as the government was unable to take back territory occupied by China, Tharoor claimed.
"So this time round, the only thing they have is their original cause -- Hindu Hriday Samrat. There is no doubt that would be their propaganda," he said.
He further contended that the BJP's agenda was always politics.
"On January 22 the PM will officiate the ceremony at Ayodhya, then in February he will inaugurate a temple in Abu Dhabi and then elections will be announced. That is what I believe and I have said so earlier too," he told reporters.
Tharoor said that the Congress plans to point out to the people the problems they are facing daily like scarcity of jobs, price rise and will ask them whether they have benefitted from the development claimed by the Central government.
On being asked by reporters about the Congress leadership declining the invite to attend the consecration ceremony at Ayodhya, Tharoor said that the party felt it was a political programme.
The MP from Thiruvananthapuram said that the party has always shown respect for religious beliefs of every individual.
"Each of us have our own religious beliefs and act accordingly. As a party, the stand is very clear. The Prime Minister is officiating what has become a very political exercise and we do not believe that is a good thing," he said.
Asked whether he plans to offer prayers at a temple tomorrow on the occasion of the Ram Temple consecration ceremony, Tharoor said, "I go to the temple to pray and not to play politics."
He said people's faith and religious beliefs were a personal issue and he does not find fault with that.
The Congress MP also found fault with the Central government closing the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Delhi on January 22 till 2.30 pm saying it would affect the large number of patients always waiting outside it for getting admitted or those requiring urgent medical aid.
"The government should withdraw the order. No hospital should be closed down. If people want to pray or watch the event on TV, that option is always available to them," he said.
Meanwhile, AIIMS in Delhi has decided to remain open on Monday, reversing its earlier decision to shut OPD services till 2:30 pm on the occasion of the consecration ceremony at the Ayodhya Ram temple.
The Ram temple complex, built in the traditional Nagara style, will be 380 feet in length (east-west direction), 250 feet in width and 161 feet in height.
Each floor of the temple will be 20 feet high and have a total of 392 pillars and 44 gates.