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BJP to launch campaign for Vande Mataram: Naidu

Written by: Staff

Chennai, Sept 11: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will launch a three-phase nationwide campaign on 'Vande Mataram' from September 25 to rekindle the spirit of nationalism and expose ''pseudo secularists'' who opposed the song, party senior leader M Venkaiah Naidu said today.

The Congress was considering the 'Vande Mataram' issue as a political hot potato and decided to 'leave it untouched for the sake of minority votes,' he told a press conference here.

Stating that 'Vande Mataram' was the real answer to terrorism and separatism, he said in the first phase of the campaign from September 25 to October two, all mandal and village-level party units would organise rendition of the song in order to educate the younger generation.

They would also take pledge to uphold the national spirit, he added.

During the second phase which commences on November seven, the birthday of Bankim Chandra Chatterjee and concludes on December seven, intellectual debates and meetings about the song would be organised.

In the third phase from December 26 to January 26, party leaders and cadre would visit the birth and death places of martyrs who laid down their lives for the country. There were many unknown heroes at regional and mandal levels who made sacrifices for the country, Mr Naidu added. He said nearly 50 leaders from the party's Central leadership would take part in the campaign.

Taking exception to Congress Media Cell Chairman Janardan Dwivedi's statement that his party did not want to send a wrong message as September seven had no significance in the history of the song, Mr Naidu said the real issue was not about the date.

''If September seven had no historical significance, then how did a Committee, presided over by the Prime Minister, decided to commemorate the centenary of the national song?'' he asked.

He charged that Mr Dwivedi's statement reflected the Congress' ''callous and irresponsible'' attitude towards the national song.

Describing the Congress' plans to celebrate the centenary of Mahatama Gandhi's Satyagraha in South Africa as ''crude afterthought,'' Mr Naidu said the present party remained only a ''namesake'' of the real Congress.


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