February 23, 2020 2:59:32 am
Hours after a criminal complaint was filed against him in a Bihar court, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) national spokesperson Waris Pathan Saturday retracted his controversial remark that 15 crore Muslims can “weigh heavy” on 100 crore Hindus saying he had no intention to hurt any community. Pathan, however, claimed that his comments had been “twisted” in a bid to target him and the party.
Addressing an anti-Citizenship Amendment Act rally at Kalaburagi, in North Karnataka, on February 16, Pathan had allegedly said that 15 crore Muslims can “weigh heavy” on 100 crore Hindus. The statement has been roundly criticised as “inflammatory”, with former chief minister and senior BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis demanding the Uddhav Thackeray-led government to take action against Pathan.
Clarifying his remark at a press conference in Mumbai, Pathan said, “This is a political conspiracy to target me and my party. In spite of this, if people have been hurt by my words, I take them back. I am a true citizen of this India and proud to be an Indian national.”
Claiming that he was not targeting any community, but the individuals who had taken a stand against Indian Muslims, the AIMIM leader said, “There are around 100 people who are basically opposing the Muslim community of India. They may be from the BJP, the RSS or the Bajrang Dal. What I meant was that we 15 crore can outweigh these 100 people.”
The AIMIM, which Friday had said that it would seek an explanation from Pathan, said the issue now stands closed for the party. “Waris Pathan has taken back his words. There are bigger issues and problems that Indian is facing at this moment. This issue is a closed chapter for us now,” AIMIM MP Imtiaz Jaleel said.
Meanwhile, a criminal complaint has been filed in a Bihar court against AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi and Pathan over the latter’s remark. The complaint was lodged by advocate Sudhir Kumar Ojha in the court of Muzaffarpur Chief Judicial Magistrate Mukesh Kumar, who posted the matter for hearing on March 4.
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