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Govt ‘talks like a lion outside, acts like a mouse within’: Congress chief Kharge on border face-off

Alwar/New Delhi: Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge on Monday alleged that the BJP government “talks like a lion outside the country, but is acting like a mouse within” as it is unable to take on China for indulging in incursions along the border and is running away from a debate on the issue in Parliament.

Speaking at a rally in Rajasthan’s Alwar during the Bharat Jodo Yatra, he also claimed that while the Congress stood for the country and helped attain Independence after its leaders gave supreme sacrifices, “not even a dog of the BJP was lost” for the country.

Kharge accused the BJP of dividing the people of the country into lines of religion, caste and region and alleged that it was ending democracy and autonomy of constitutional institutions, against which the Congress was taking out the Bharat Jodo Yatra.

“The Modi government claims that they are very strong and pat themselves claiming no one can look into their eyes, but disputes and clashes are rising at the border. After 20 of our soldiers were martyred at the border in Galwan, Modi ji met the Chinese president 18 times. They held meetings and even had swings. After all this, why is it happening at the border with China?” he said.

Kharge said he again raised the issue of China in Parliament and wanted a discussion on the border situation, but the BJP government is not ready for it.

“They talk like a lion outside, but their actions if you see are like a mouse. We want that the issue is discussed and given notices, but they are still not ready for a discussion in Parliament,” he said.

“Has even your dog died for the country, still they claim to be patriots and if we say something we are termed as deshdrohi (anti-nationals),” the Congress chief said, alleging that the BJP is trying to finish democracy and the Constitution.

That is why Rahul Gandhi is holding this Bharat Jodo Yatra and is trying to unite everyone, he claimed.

Kharge said it was surprising that our demand for a discussion on the Chinese incursions at the border was not allowed. “They said there is no need for a discussion.”

“Defence Minister Rajnath Singh came and gave a one-page statement and left. But we needed a discussion on what is happening with China, what the government is doing and what is the state of our border and soldiers.

“We in the Congress are with the country and for national security, and we will all together protect the country. But why are you hiding and running away from a discussion with China,” he said, adding that Congress is only seeking information on what is happening.

“This government is ending democracy. The autonomy of institutions is being reduced. The investigative agencies are being misused. They are also trying to threaten Congress,” he alleged.

“This government of the BJP is trying to divide the people on the basis of religion, caste and language. That is why the yatra is getting good support from the public. Whenever Rahul ji says something, the BJP has problems with,” he claimed.

The 80-year-old leader said when Rahul Gandhi talked about the border dispute with China, BJP leaders raised the matter alleging that “Rahul ji is trying to break the country and that he has no respect for our soldiers”.

Earlier in the day, Kharge raised the issue of the border conflict with China in the Rajya Sabha and demanded a discussion on the issue.

“China is illegally encroaching upon our borders. Satellite imagery shows that they are building divisional headquarters, an army garrison and weapon shelters for artillery. “Why is the Modi government shying away from ‘China pe charcha’?” he asked on Twitter.

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