Rajnath asks writers, scientists to come meet PM, give suggestions

Amidst the row over claims of rising intolerance in the country, Home Minister Rajnath Singh today asked artistes and intellectuals to come and meet Prime Minsiter Narendra Modi to suggest ways to resolve the crisis even as he wondered why the NDA government and the prime minister were being targeted over the issue.

On a day when writers and artistes vehemently denied that Congress and Leftists were behind the protest that has seen several of them return their state-conferred honours, Singh also said that “returning awards is not the right thing”.

Assuring that the government would take their suggestions seriously and will act upon them in the wake of their charge of “growing intolerance” in the country, he said “Returning awards is not the right thing, I request the writers and scientists to come and meet the prime minister and give their suggestions, the Union government will take concrete steps on those.”

Addressing a function organised here by Akhil Bharatiya Vidyut Parishad, Singh also said it was “wrong” to target NDA government and the prime minister on the issue as law and order was a state subject and the Union government only extended assistance as and when needed.

“It’s beyond my understanding, why they are targeting the (NDA) government and our prime minister on this issue,” he said, adding “it’s not right to target the government and PM”.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of the event, Singh also said that the NDA government will not function not on the basis of caste or religion but humanity and justice.

Meanwhile, talking about the Bihar polls, he expressed confidence that the BJP-led NDA will form the government there. He claimed that even analysts had forecast victory for NDA in Bihar with a clear majority.

At a “resistance” (Pratirodh) meet today in the national capital writers, artistes, thinkers and academics had gathered to protest what they termed an “attack on reason, democracy and composite culture”.

They also took umbrage at Union Minister Arun Jaitley’s remarks dubbing their protest as “manufactured rebellion”, questioning how he could make such a claim when the President, many business leaders as well as common people have joined in voicing concern over the “disturbing” trend.