Updated: February 22, 2020 9:44:08 am
The BJP on Friday reacted sharply to AIMIM leader Waris Pathan’s remarks at a rally in Karnataka and questioned the “silence of liberals” protesting against the new citizenship law on the remarks.
Addressing a rally to protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act at Kalaburagi in Karnataka on February 16, the AIMIM leader purportedly said, “...Ikattha hoke chalna padega, azadi leni padegi aur jo cheez mangne se nahin milti, usko chheen ke lena padega yeh bhi yaad rakhna…humko bola ma-behno ko aage bhej diya… abhi toh sirf sherniya bahar nikli hain aur tumhare paseene chhoot gaye, samajh lo agar hum log saath mein aa gaye toh kya hoga, 15 crore hain lekin 100 ke upar bhari hain, yaad rakh lena yeh baat (We have to take freedom, and when you don’t get something by asking for it, you have to snatch it…they said we put the women in front…only the tigresses came out and you have started sweating…imagine what would happen if all of us came along…we are 15 crore but weigh heavy on 100 crore).” The AIMIM leader has claimed he was quoted out of context.
BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra alleged that his remarks were an indication that a conspiracy is being plotted in the name of protests against the amended citizenship law.
He alleged that the remarks also showed that women sitting in Shaheen Bagh were being used “as a shield to further the cause of hatred”.
“No one from these liberal brigades is making an issue of the divisive comments made by Waris Pathan. All of them are the same. Haath mein Samvidhaan, dil mein Waris Pathan (Constitution in hand, Waris Pathan in the heart),” Patra told reporters.
The BJP leader said Pathan’s remarks point to the conspiracy to defame the government and disturb peace.
Former Maharashtra chief minister and senior BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis condemned Pathan’s remarks.
Speaking to reporters in Nagpur, Fadnavis demanded an apology from Pathan and asked the Uddhav Thackeray government to take action.
“We condemn the statement made by Waris Pathan and demand an apology. In case he does not apologise, the state government must take action against him,” he said.
Fadnavis said Pathan should understand that minorities were safe and enjoyed full freedom in India because 100 crore Hindus live in the country.
He said no one would dare to utter such a statement in a Muslim-majority nation. “Hindu community is tolerant but its tolerance should not be mistaken for weakness,” he said.
“Pathan should apologise to the nation and the Hindu community,” he said.
Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut said, “Waris Pathan made a statement that 15 crore Muslims will dominate 100 crore Indians. I warn that Shiv Sena is capable of giving a proper reply to such statements even though we are in the government in Maharashtra.”
NCP spokesperson and Maharashtra Minister Nawab Malik condemned Pathan’s remarks. “We condemn Pathan’s divisive and inflammatory comments. Is there a fixed match between AIMIM and BJP for making communal remarks?” he said.
Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant said, “AIMIM and BJP are two sides of the same coin.”
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