The BJP on Sunday debunked claims that it is against minorities, with senior leader L K Advani [ Images ] terming them "motivated propaganda".
Citing examples to debunk this "motivated propaganda", BJP leader L K Advani said, "It is an important enough occasion for me to respond to the consistent propaganda that my party, the BJP, is anti-minorities and anti-Christian."
"Let me go back into history and cite a few examples to debunk this motivated propaganda," he said while addressing the golden jubilee celebration of the Archdiocese of Delhi [ Images ].
Recalling the early days he said, "The BJP's predecessor was the Bharatiya Jana Sangh which was formed by Dr Shyama Prasad Mookerjee in 1951. Dr Mookerjee was an eminent freedom fighter who also served as India's [ Images ] first Industries Minister in Pandit Nehru's [ Images ] cabinet."
"In the course of building the party in different parts of the country in the early 50s, he (Mookerjee) appointed Barrister V K John as the chief of the Jana Sangh in Madras province.
The same propaganda was also heard at the time. Barrister John was asked: 'How can you, a Christian, accept to be an office-bearer of a communal party?' His answer was forthright: 'I know Dr S P Mookerjee very well. He cannot be the president of a communal party."
Giving another example from his political life, Advani said "Because of my school background, I often use Christian metaphors even in my political communication. When the Bharatiya Janata Party [ Images ] was born on 6th April 1980, it was Easter Sunday, the Day of Resurrection of Jesus Christ [ Images ]."