'Appears to have lost its mental balance': Min Karandlaje on Opposition's demand to ban RSS
Mangaluru, Sep 30: The Popular Front of India (PFI) was banned by the Centre for its anti-national, terrorist activities and murders of Hindu youths, Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Shobha Karandlaje said on Friday.
Addressing reporters in Udupi, she said the organisation had been giving training to youth for carrying out terrorist activities. The NIA had been collecting evidence against the outfit for the last three years, the minister said.
To a question as to why the SDPI with a similar ideology was not banned, Karandlaje said it is a political party and comes under the purview of the Election Commission (EC). The EC has given instructions to confiscate the properties of PFI activists who work in SDPI, she added.
Reacting to the Congress demand to ban the RSS, she alleged the opposition party appears to have lost its mental balance. The party, which promoted PFI during its rule, does not have the right to question the credentials of RSS, the minister said.
On Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's Bharat Jodo Yatra entering Karnataka, she said he should first go to the borders where the Congress gave away several areas in the country to Pakistan during partition.
The minister dismissed reports that she is planning to change her name to Shobha Gowda. "This is a propaganda against me. Some people think politicians are jokers. I request media, social media and political circles to stop this canard," Karandlaje said.
She ridiculed Youth Congress leader Mithun Rai's statement that if anyone can take a selfie with the Union Minister in Udupi, he would give Rs 5,000 as prize money. He was pointing to the rare appearance of the minister in Udupi, which she represents in the Lok Sabha.
"Let him come first to take selfie with me. I will not respond to it as I don't want to give him publicity," she said.
However, several BJP local leaders and workers took selfies with the minister and one of them, Mahila Morcha district president Veena Shetty, said she has taken a selfie and will participate in Mithun Rai's competition.