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Congress asks BJP to act with restraint on Article 370 and Ram Mandir

PTI 05 Jun 2014, 8:03:49 IST
New Delhi: The Congress on Thursday asked the NDA government not to "reopen very sensitive issues" like abrogation of Article 370, Uniform Civil Code and Ram Mandir.

Party spokesperson Shashi Tharoor also cautioned restraint on the issue of tackling infiltration in Assam, saying that the problem cannot be solved by "wave of a wand" and "human lives are at stake". "We have taken a very clear position that this is not the time in the country to reopen very sensitive issues raised by several leaders," Tharoor said.

He was asked about Press Council Chairman Justice Markandey Katju's remarks that Uniform Civil Code must be implemented. Such issues will distract the development message, he said, adding that the BJP-led coalition should "stick to the script".

Tharoor said that even calling public debate on such issues is "not an innocent" exercise.

On the issue of illegal immigration in Assam, he said, "At the moment, we urge that the government has an appropriate procedure to announce, this kind of irresponsible statement should not be made because it is really lighting a match at the petrol station."

"We would urge restraint and abundant caution and we say this from long experience of governance in a country which is full of far bigger challenges... We don't treat people in an inhuman fashion and if we find that happening, we will be certainly speaking against it," he said.

His remarks came close on the heels of Union Minister of State for Home Kiran Rijiju terming as "a national problem" the issue of illegal migration from Bangladesh and promising action against those "infiltrators" staying in Indian territory.

The minister said this when reporters sought his comment on BJP Assam unit's plan to launch 'Bangladeshi bhagao abhiyan (push back Bangladeshis)' in the state.