Congress hands stained with Muslims blood, says Salman Khurshid

the Congress said it “completely disagreed” with Salman Khurshid, and urged its leaders to refrain from making such “unfounded statements that help the cause” of the ruling party

india Updated: Apr 24, 2018 21:13 IST
Pradeep Saxena
Pradeep Saxena
Aligarh, Hindustan Times
Salman Khurshid,Congress,Muslim bloodstains
Former Union minister and Congress leader Salman Khurshid. The former Union minister was the chief guest at the annual function of BR Ambedkar Hall of the Aligarh Muslim University. (Raj K Raj/HT File Photo)

Former law minister Salman Khurshid has stirred a controversy by saying that the Congress party’s hands were stained with the blood of Muslims.

Khurshid’s remarks while addressing students at Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) on Monday prompted the BJP to mount a fresh attack on the Congress, saying it was an “acknowledgement” of the party’s “history of engineering” communal riots in the country.

However, the Congress said it “completely disagreed” with Khurshid, and urged its leaders to refrain from making such “unfounded statements that help the cause” of the ruling party.

Khurshid’s remark came in response to a question by a student who asked how the Congress would “wash off bloodstains of Muslims from its hands” and referred to various communal riots and controversial incidents in the past, including the Hashimpura massacre, the Muzaffarnagar riots and the Babri Masjid demolition. All these incidents took place when the Congress was in power, the student claimed.

“It is a political question. There is blood on our hands. I am also a part of the Congress so let me say it, we have blood on our hands. Is this why you are trying to tell us that if someone attacks you, we must not come forward to protect you?” Khurshid said at the AMU’s annual function where he was the chief guest.

“We are ready to show the blood on our hands so that you realise that you too must not get blood on your hands. If you attack them, you are the ones who would get stains on your hands,” he added

Appreciating the student for his “fearless” question, Khurshid said, “Learn from our history and don’t create such situations where if you come back to Aligarh Muslim University after 10 years, you find no one like yourself putting out questions.”

Later, when journalists questioned Khurshid about his statement, he clarified, “I was defending the Congress party and I made the statement not as a Congressman but as a human being. I will continue (to do) that.”

In Delhi, Congress spokesperson PL Punia said his party disassociated itself from Khurshid’s remark and called for restraint from leaders.

Punia told reporters that the Congress was the only party that worked towards building an egalitarian society by carrying all sections of the people, including the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Ttribes and minorities, before and after Independence.

“All leaders must remember that such unfounded statements only help the cause of those in power today who seek to divide the society on caste and communal line to retain and attain power at any cost,” he said.

Asked if the party would take action against Khurshid, Punia said he need not add anything to what he has already stated.

The BJP, meanwhile, asked the Congress to come clean on Khurshid’s remarks. Union minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the Congress always “wore a mask of secularism but practiced” communalism.

“The Congress is a history-sheeter as far as communal riots are concerned. It practised politics of divide and rule while using castes and communities to sow division in society. It created social tensions for votes. It continues with this tradition,” he said.

First Published: Apr 24, 2018 16:13 IST