Even as the dust settles on the “Hindu terror” issue, government has said home minister Sushilkumar Shinde had not apologised for his controversial remarks but only expressed regret, which was accepted by BJP.
“Well, it is regret. That is the word that has been used. I cannot change the language once it is used,” parliamentary affairs minister Kamal Nath told Karan Thapar on Devil’s Advocate programme on CNN-IBN. The minister was responding to questions on whether Shinde had expressed regret or tendered an apology for his remark made at a Congress meet in Jaipur that BJP was running camps for training Hindu terrorists.
Nath said while Shinde had used the word BJP, he has clarified that he did not mean any political organisation.
“If it has inadvertently or advertently been construed to mean that, he said I express regret,” Nath explained.
He also sought to make a distinction between Shinde’s remarks and similar comments made by P Chidambaram during his tenure as home minister. “The difference was Shinde used the word BJP and Chidambaram didn’t use the word BJP.”
Nath admitted Shinde’s statement was discussed with the BJP leadership.
“There was a discussion and some text was worked out. Some text was discussed (with BJP). They said this was enough... they said he should say this. This was not a test like putting a comma and a full stop,” Nath said, describing the meetings with BJP leaders.
“We did not want a statement, whereas they wanted something and the only way to cut it short was to discuss it and sort it out,” Nath added.