Demanding the dismissal of union home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, the BJP leadership led by party's national general secretary JP Nadda staged a protest here on Thursday.
Terming the comment of Shinde that the BJP and the RSS were behind "Hindu terror", Nadda said, "By making such a comment, the union home minister has not only shown his mentality, but has also hurt a majority of Indians. The BJP strongly condemns such remarks. We demand the removal of Shinde and also want both Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh to apologise."
Nadda said this protest was just a beginning and the BJP would continue to hold agitations over the issue till the union government realises the kind of pathetic remark Shinde has made."
Punjab BJP chief Kamal Sharma, who also took part in the protest, said, "I feel that any person with such a mindset has no moral right to assume such a prestigious position in the union government. Shinde has attacked the Hindus of the nation just because he wants to please the Muslim votebank. People in the UPA government are referring to terrorists like Hafiz Saeed as Hafiz Saeed Saab. This shows the commitment of the Congress against terrorism."
The Punjab BJP chief said while the BJP and the RSS had a glorious history, people like Shinde had no vision and were only capable of making such useless remarks.
"I have heard that now the Congress is saying that it was Shinde's personal comment. I fail to understand how the home minister of the country can make such personal comments. He has no right to continue in office," said Punjab cabinet minister Anil Joshi.
The dharna, in which hundreds of BJP workers participated, began at around noon and continued for about five hours.
Shinde's effigy burnt in Pathankot
Pathankot: BJP leaders set ablaze Shinde's effigy after holding a protest demonstration here on Thursday. Pathankot MLA Ashwani Sharma and chairman (child welfare) Swaran Salaria, along with their supporters, first assembled in the forest resthouse and then took out a rally towards Gandhi Chowk.
Sharma said Shinde was encouraging Pakistan and terrorists by making such statements. He said RSS workers and BJP members were patriots and never backed anti-national elements. "Shinde's statement has given Pakistan and the terrorists there a chance to open their mouth against our country," he said.