‘Remarks by Aiyar, Khurshid seditious, Cong must apologise’

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Nov 19, 2015 01:58 IST
Former union minister Salman Khurshid. (File Photo)

On a day the ruling side called Congress leaders Mani Shankar Aiyar and Salman Khurshid’s alleged remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi as “seditious”, another Congress leader Shakeel Ahmad stoked a fresh controversy on Wednesday, linking religion with the Modi government’s narrative on terrorism.

Ahmad, who is a Congress general secretary in charge of Punjab and Haryana, wrote on Twitter, “Thankfully Chhota Rajan & Anup Chetia (ULFA) are not Muslims. Had they been Muslims Modi govt would have a different narrative altogether.”

The BJP was quick to hit back at the Congress leader for making a “very appalling and shameless comment” and trying to discriminate among terrorists on religious lines.

“Congress has divided the society for petty political gains on the lines of Hindus and Muslims…it has created vote banks in the society and today they are discriminating between Hindu terrorists and Muslim terrorists,” BJP spokesman Sambit Patra said.

As his remarks raked up a row, Ahmad said he was trying to expose the “double standards and double speak” of the BJP and Modi government on the issue of terror.

Ahmad’s remarks came a day after the BJP called Aiyar and Khurshid as ‘propagandists for IS’ for their comments criticising the PM. The ruling party likened their anti-Modi statements with ‘treason’ and demanded an apology from Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

Union ministers M Venkaiah Naidu and Prakash Javadekar said the Congress should take strong action against the two leaders for their “seditious” and “anti-national” remarks.

But the Congress sought to defuse the BJP’s attack by maintaining that the party line had been repeatedly enunciated at party briefings.

“Aiyar and Khurshid have clarified in different ways... They have denied also. Be that as it may, the Congress view is view from this podium. Anybody else says it is individual view, personal view,” party spokesman Abhishek Singhvi said.

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