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'Drop all DMK ministers over Ram remarks'

Terming TN Chief Minister Karunanidhi's remarks about Lord Ram "irresponsible", BJP asks UPA to dismiss all DMK ministers from the Govt.

india Updated: Sep 21, 2007 21:52 IST

Describing Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K. Karunanidhi's utterances about Lord Ram as "ugly and blasphemous", the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Friday demanded that the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) drop all DMK ministers from the central government.

BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said his party demanded that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi persuade Karunanidhi to apologise or drop all his DMK ministers from the government for the "irresponsible utterances" of the DMK leader on the existence of Lord Ram "which has hurt the sentiments of millions of Hindus in the country".

"A government formed on the sole basis of negative opposition can neither sustain for a full (five-year) term nor create a positive environment in the nation," said party spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad, quoting party president Rajnath Singh at the party national executive meet which began here Friday.

"Rajnath in his presidential speech said that the entire scenario, from international diplomacy to increasing terrorism and increasing inflation over the past three years clearly proves this," Prasad told reporters.

Rajnath, according to Prasad, also said that only the BJP was capable of following the dharma of coalition politics to take the country forward in a positive direction. "The difference between the performance of Vajpayee-ji's government and of the Manmohan Singh government, which is running in the shadow of Sonia Gandhi, is clear proof in itself."

Political maturity, he said, was a must for running a coalition government and both the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and BJP displayed this quality and also shattered the myth that only the Congress was capable of providing stability. The BJP was the main party in the previous NDA coalition government.

"Whether it is development or stability or even controlling terrorism or inflation, the one and only alternative before the people of the country is a BJP-led NDA government," Prasad said, adding: "The country's changing political situation today offers us an opportunity to once again establish ourselves at the centre of India's politics.

"Instead of taking care of the common man, the present day government and its allies are more involved in 'competitive politics of appeasement' and such an attitude needs to be condemned in the harshest of words," Prasad said.

He clarified that the BJP was not against friendship with the USA, but the interests of the nation and its dignity should be observed.

"The BJP's ideological core is cultural nationalism. Over the last one decade, the pace at which the Western model of economic development is taking place, it is equally fast also damaging our eternal cultural values, social ideals and family structure. While other political parties may not be according due seriousness to the matter, but from the BJP's perspective, which is dedicated towards India and Indian-ness, it is a serious challenge," Rajnath said in his address at the opening session.

"If India's biggest ray of hope for the future is its increasing economic prosperity and intellectual capital, its biggest challenge for the future is poverty associated with agriculture and the villages and the degradation of values in society.

"Out of these 60 years (since independence), for 54 years the Congress and so called secular parties have led the country. And for six years the BJP led NDA government was in power. Today the people of the country can make a clear comparison between 60 years on the one hand and six years on the other. The picture of 60 years versus six years is enough to tell the difference between the capacity and capability of the BJP and the other parties," the party president said.

Earlier, the national executive meet of the BJP began here with a call to its workers to be prepared for mid-term polls, keeping in mind the strained relations between the UPA and its Left allies.