The way some Congress leaders are seen trying to incite violence against non-Gujaratis in various parts of Gujarat shows the elements like Alpesh and his Thakor Sena enjoy the blessings of top Congress leaders in the divisive politics
Jaywant Pandya from Karnawati
Gujarat is in a new kind of turmoil. It is for the first time that the state is being defamed for attacking non-Gujaratis. Gujaratis are known for their assimilating nature. They live in various parts of Bharat and also the world. They are also known for their hospitality. Then, why is there a series of attacks on innocent labours, who have come from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, etc.? How are such defaming incidents happening?
Alpesh Thakor instigated a fearsome circumstances which led to violence against people from UP and Bihar in Gujarat
On September 28, a 14 month old girl child was raped and the accused was from Bihar. He was a labourer in a ceramic factory at Dhundhar located near Himmatnagar in Sabarkantha District. Then attacks on migrant workers in North Gujarat started. Violence spread to six districts. Thousands of non-Gujaratis started going back to their native states due to the threats from alleged Kshatriya Thakor Sena. Their stories of fleeing overnight are very traumatic. However, the police worked swiftly and arrested the accused. Then, why is violence taking place?
The prime suspect in the violence is said to be the Congress MLA Alpesh Thakor, who has incidentally been made co-incharge of Bihar Congress just two months back. He delivered a provocative speech on Facebook live on September 29, just a day after the rape. He said, “..Kyan sudhi aava lokone aapne sahan karya rakheeshun? (How long we will tolerate them?)..aavo banav Gujaratman kyanya pan banto hoy to eva lokone chhodava naheen. (If such incident happens in any corner of Gujarat, don’t let them go.)… E parpranteeya yuvan je koi chhe e kyarey chhutavano nathee. (This migrant boy won’t be freed.) E naradham jo kadach thakor senane sonpee deedho hot to teno hisab karee nakhyo hot. (If that rapist had been given to Thakor Sena, it would have settled account.”
Migrant workers leave for their homes following attacks in Ahmedabad
This was not first time that Alpesh spoke against migrant workers. He has been speaking against them since he started OBC agitation against Patidar Reservation movement started by Hardik Patel. But, on September 17, he spoke against the migrants at ‘Berojgar Mahasammelan’ at Becharaji organised by his Kshatriya Thakor Sena. He said in the programme: “Outsiders commit crime here and go back to their places. They beat up common people in villages…Companies truck will be stopped and their gates will be broken…How many people are ready to fight?”
The state government worked silently ensuring safety to the migrant workers. Whenever, police got a call, it rushed to the caller’s place within few minutes. Migrant workers seemed happy with the police action, but fear gripped as migrant girls were also targeted by stopping them on road.
Meanwhile, Mumbai Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam threatened Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying: “PM ke gruha rajya mein agar UP, Bihar aur MP ke logon ko maar-maar ke bhagaya jaayega toh ek din PM ko bhi Varanasi jana hai, yeh yaad rakhna. (If people of UP, Bihar and MP will be beaten up in PM’s home state then PM must remember that one day he has to go to Varanasi.”
Vijay Rupani, Gujarat CM
Congress first incites violence against Migrants. Congress President tweets to condemn this violence. Does the Congress President not have any shame? - Vijay Rupani, Gujarat CMThen it was the turn of Congress president Rahul Gandhi. He tweeted about the violence. CM Vijay Rupani gave him back tweeting “Congress first incited violence against the Migrants. Congress President tweeted to condemn the violence. Does the Congress President not have any shame?” In second tweet, Rupani said, “If the Congress President is against the violence in Gujarat, he needs to take action against its own members who incited violence against the migrants. Tweeting is not solution, taking action is! But will he act?”
Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel clearly alleged that Alpesh Thakor’s Thakor Sena was behind the attacks. Many videos of alleged members of Thakor Sena threatening migrants are evidence to this. Messages for inciting for violence against migrants were being circulated on social media. Police arrested 533 people of which 20 are Congress leaders. Many are Thakor Sena leaders/ members too.
VHP starts Helpline
Amidst the attempts to incite violence in Gujarat allegedly by some Congress leaders, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) started a 24X7 helpline for the non-Gujarati labrourers who are migrating from the state. VHP workers are visiting railway stations and the localities of non-Gujarati people to provide them help and ensure that they need not fear. The VHP Helpline numbers include 9723938333 (Haresh Bhai), 9913290382 (Ghanshyam Bhai) and 9898554556 (Nipur Bhai).
Calculation behind the violent agitation can be easily understood. This violent agitation is beneficial only to the Congress as vote share of migrant workers to BJP in Gujarat might fall. And consequently, this violence would have severe effect on votes in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Bihar and Jharkhand in Lok Sabha 2019 elections as well as in Assembly elections. Gujarat will suffer economically in a major way as factories work, Ahmedabad Metro train work etc might be affected severely.
It is to be recalled that in 2014 Shri Narendra Modi won on the development plank, and since then Gujarat has been on the target. Various agitations such as Patidar reservation by Hardik, Dalit agitation by Jignesh Mevani and OBC agitation by Alpesh Thakor were pointing to the failure of development model of Gujarat. All three agitations had subsidiary target of defeating the BJP in Assembly elections of 2017. But unfortunately (on the part of Congress) all three got exposed that they were Congress supported. Alpesh Thakor joined the Congress and got elected as Congress MLA, while Congress supported Jignesh Mevani in his election. Hardik’s support to Congress and his secret visit to Rahul Gandhi in Ahmedabad hotel is not unknown. So, it is speculated that now there is conspiracy to start new agitation for dividing Gujarati vs non-Gujarati.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Bihar CM Nitish Kumar spoke to Shri Rupani and appealed him to see that there are no attacks on non-Gujaratis. They expressed satisfaction over Gujarat government’s actions. Shri Rupani appealed to the migrant workers to return back to Gujarat.
After being exposed, Alpesh Thakor claimed with tears in eyes that he couldn’t support violence and he was going to sit on fast on October 11. Bihar Congress and Gujarat Congress leaders are not happy with Raj Thackeray kind of politics by Alpesh, but the Congress top leadership seems to be backing Alpesh. Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel gave a clean chit to Alpesh alleging that the BJP was trying to politicise the issue.