Narendra Modi shares dais with Baba Ramdev, almost refers to post-Godhra riots

Modi RamdevGujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi with Baba Ramdev at a programme at Patanjali Yogpeeth in Haridwar. (PTI)

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi has been avoiding questions on the 2002 post-Godhra violence against Muslims, today said there has been no riot in the state in the last 12 years - he was sharing the dais with yoga guru Baba Ramdev today.

Modi maintained that his model of governance was based on 'welfare for all' but made no direct reference to the post-Godhra violence that claimed the lives of over 1,000 people, an overwhelming majority of whom were Muslims.

"My manifesto is everyone should be healthy and welfare for all. In Gujarat (where) riots happened every other day and innocents were killed, today after 12 years there is not a sign of riots," he said.

The speech was delivered to a gathering, including a number of religious men, at yoga guru Ramdev's ashram here.

Modi, who generally avoids questions on the post-Godhra violence, has been accused by his detractors of having not taken any steps to stop the violence against Muslims after the train carnage in Godhra.

In his speech, Modi accused the Centre of virtually hounding Ramdev for his views that go against the government.

"I want to ask the rulers in Delhi whether it is wrong to put forward your views in a democracy. Is it wrong to have views that are diametrically opposite to that of the government," he said.

Referring to the death of a woman volunteer due to the injuries sustained in a midnight police action on Ramdev's followers on June, 2011 in the capital, Modi said "Rajbala (the woman who succumbed) is seeking reply from the government on the action. The people in the government are using indecent language against Baba Ramdev, who is serving the nation not only by with his yoga, but also with his movements (against black money)," Modi said.

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