CONGRESS SLAMS BJP OVER MODI’S ‘TOILETS FIRST, TEMPLES LATER’ REMARK

October 3 accused the BJP of double standards after its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi said toilets had to be a greater priority than temples in India. Addressing college students on Wednesday, the Gujarat chief minister rued that many Indians still do not have access to basic sanitation. “My image is that of Hindutva but I’ll tell you my real thinking. I have said in my state: pehle shauchalaya, phir devalaya (toilets first, temples later),” Modi said. Congress leader Digvijaya Singh said this was another example of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s double standards. Rural development minister Jairam Ramesh had drawn flak from the BJP in April when he said that toilets are more important than temples. “No matter how many temples we go to, we are not going to get salvation. We need to give priority to toilets and cleanliness,” Jairam Ramesh had said. The BJP’s Rajiv Pratap Rudy had said then that such comments would “destroy the fine fabric of religion and faith”. Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal activists had even protested outside the minister’s residence.

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