After Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar announced that an all-party consensus has been reached to undertake a caste-based survey in the state, Union Minister Giriraj Singh on Wednesday urged the state government to exclude Bangladeshis and Rohingyas from the proposed exercise.
Singh even called for a strong anti-conversion law, to refrain from using the word ‘minorities’ and erasing all “symbols of oppression by foreign invaders” like the Gyanvapi mosque, that lies adjacent to the iconic Kashi Vishwanath temple in Varanasi.
Speaking to reporters in Bihar’s Katihar, the Begusarai MP said that despite the Centre’s objection to carry out a caste based census, he supported the state government’s move, while stating that his remarks were his “personal opinion. His remarks on the case-based census came hours ahead of Nitish Kumar’s all-party meet on the same issue.
Singh also said that “Muslims, who take advantage of reservations for backward classes, must also be covered in the exercise”.
On caste-based census, he also stressed on the need to exclude “infiltrators”, who are not called by the name because of politics of appeasement. “Be it Bangladeshis, Rohingyas (from Myanmar) or any other type of illegal residents, they must be kept out,” said Singh, adding that he believes in dropping the term “minorities” as his government believes in ‘sabka saath sabka vikas’.
“Even (Mehmood) Madani has said he does not belong to a minority group,” Singh said while pointing out Deoband cleric’s recent statement saying Muslims should consider themselves the “majority”.
Saying that the Places of Worship Act, 1991 is not applicable to the Gyanvpapi Mosque, Singh said, “Nonetheless, in my view POW Act is not applicable to Gyanvapi. We must also understand why Muslims are so worked up over the leak of the video footage”.
“Had Sardar Patel lived longer and Rajendra Prasad been the president, this matter would have been settled. But Nehru put obstructions for his politics of appeasement. It was unnecessary. After all, the country was partitioned in the name of religion,” Singh added.
(With inputs from PTI)