Pune: Describing the RSS as force behind the Narendra Modi Government, JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar today alleged the present dispensation had converted the country into a "laboratory of communalism and anti-Dalit" policies.
Kanhaiya Kumar, President of Jawaharlal Nehru Student's Union speaks during youth assembly in Mumbai on Saturday. Pic/ PTI
"Modi is the Prime Minister and the RSS is his strength. They have converted the country into a laboratory of communalism and anti-Dalit policies. Why do you fear when we talk about our ideology seeking social equality and fight to end casteism?" he asked, addressing a packed gathering of students assembled under the banner of Progressive Students' Association.
Kumar, who arrived here under heavy police security in the backdrop of the alleged physical assault on him aboard a Jet Airways flight to Pune, also asserted he was not going to be intimidated by such attacks.
"Police are telling lies saying that what happened in the morning was a quarrel over seats. Quarrel over seats take place in Mumbai local trains and not on planes.
"I do not want to press charges against the attackers because they also belong to us and have been incited. But I will not be intimidated," he said, referring to the incident that forced him to travel by road to Pune.
Referring to "Bharat Mata Ki Jai" slogan controversy and Yoga guru Ramdeo's comments, he said "We will certainly say 'Bharat Mata ki jai', but who has given you monopoly over this?"
The 29-year-old JNU student alleged that the nature of "Bharat Mata" was being altered.
"Earlier, Bharat Mata held farm grains in one hand and tiranga on another. Now tricolour is being replaced by bhagwa (saffron). These people will change the national flag. They have nothing to do with nationalism. What they want to promote is one religion and one culture". He said nationalism was being equated with "Brahminism" which signalled danger to the country.
Kumar sought to dispel the notion that students in the country were being instigated against the Prime Minister. "We have no personal animosity against Modi. We are only demanding our rights. Give us employment. When we talk of democratic and constitutional rights of people, we are branded anti-national."