A private news channel has allegedly caught on camera members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) discussing money to get crowds for the party’s mega rally at Rohini’s Japanese Park on Sunday addressed by Narendra Modi.
The sting operation footage purportedly shows district presidents of the BJP Minority Cell of Shahdara, Mayur Vihar and New Delhi districts discussing the rate at which they get crowds for rallies with journalists of the news channel — News Nation — who posed as an agents who supplied people for such meetings.
One of the district unit functionaries allegedly admitted that they sometime made “Hindus look like Muslims” for their rallies and demanded educated people who could answer queries from the media.
Others were reportedly telling the reporters-turned-agents that they did not need people for the rally as they had already arranged a “genuine” crowd who was interested in hearing Modi.
Reacting to the sting operation, Delhi BJP president Vijay Goel said the operation did not expose anything. “Our minority convention at Talkatora Staidum earlier this year proved that Muslims are getting associated with the BJP. We don’t need to hire people for our rally,” Goel told Hindustan Times.
Atif Rashid, president of BJP’s Minority Cell, said nothing objectionable had been caught on camera. “Our party functionaries are not asking for crowds. It is the correspondents who offered to provide people but our party workers refused. There is no exchange of money, no promises made. Our party workers also said they have genuine people with them who were going to listen to Modi the next day,” Rashid said.
In a statement, Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) general secretary and spokesperson Jitendra Kumar Kochar said the way crowd was mobilised for Narendra Modi’s rally showed how low the BJP could stoop to achieve its ends.
“The BJP has besmirched the sentiments of the minority community. It has become very clear from where the crores of rupees, which were spent for the Modi rally, had come,” Kochar said.
Over a lakh people attended the rally in Rohini on Sunday. The BJP had been reaching out all sections of society, specially the minorities, to ensure their participation at the rally.