Congress flays Najma Heptulla over 'Hindu' row

Aug 29 2014, 21:59 IST
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SummaryCongress today hit out at Minority Affairs Minister Najma Heptulla for her reported remark that all Indians were "Hindus" and said the issue was one of "mindset".

Congress today hit out at Minority Affairs Minister Najma Heptulla for her reported remark that all Indians were "Hindus" and said the issue was one of "mindset".

"The issue is not of semantics of 'Hindu' or 'Hindi'. The issue is of mindset. Some people are becoming more loyal than the king... When a Cabinet minister says it, it raises questions. Is it the priority of the nation?" said party spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi.

"It is a mixture, a cocktail of Nagpur, Singhals, Giriraj Kishore. This cocktail is being manifested now," he added.

After her reported comment on all Indians being "Hindus" stoked a controversy, Najma Heptulla clarified that she had referred to Indians as 'Hindi', which she said was the Arabic term for people living in India.

Her remark was "not in relation to the religion but in relation to identity as nationality", Najma Heptulla has said.

Reacting to the matter, Congress leader Manish Tewari said that the minister should read the Constitution.

"We respect Najmaji a lot, but it would be better if she reads the Constitution. The Constitution mentions 'Bharat' and, going by that, every citizen of the country is a 'Bharatiya' and not Hindu," Tewari said.

Meanwhile, in reference to the statement by BJP leader Yogi Adityanath on Hinduism, Singhvi said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi's nice words like 'harmony', 'inclusion', 'communal peace' are made "irrelevant" because "they break down when we meet reality".

There is "direct complicity because this very, very eloquent and rhetorical prime minister keeps completely silent when such issues are raised. He has words for everything but he becomes silent when such issues are raised. Not even a single condemnation. That tells its own tale."

Singhvi alleged that ever since the conclusion of the recent general elections, a highly polarised, divisive and provocative atmosphere is being sought to be created in the country.

What is the meaning of this "hypocrisy and double voice" when the prime minister uses one language from the ramparts of Red Fort but "keeps silent" the next moment in Parliament when venom is spewed in his presence, Singhvi asked.

What is the use of nice words when a person like Muzaffarnagar riot accused MLA Sangeet Som is "dignified, honoured by... a posse of 'Z' class security (personnel)", he further charged.

"These are two examples. There are enough Girirajs, there are enough other persons in the closet and outside the closet which

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