‘We respect all religions, but every party has freedom’: Congress on Sanatan row | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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‘We respect all religions, but every party has freedom’: Congress on Sanatan row

Sep 04, 2023 03:11 PM IST

The Congress said that respecting all religions is its ideology, but every political party has the freedom to express their views

Amid rising row over Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) leader and Tamil Nadu sports minister Udhayanidhi Stalin’s “eradicate Sanatan Dharma” remark, the Congress on Monday said that respecting all religions is its ideology, but every political party has the freedom to express their views.

Congress general secretary (organisation) KC Venugopal and general secretary (communications) Jairam Ramesh at the party headquarters in Delhi on Monday. (PTI)
Congress general secretary (organisation) KC Venugopal and general secretary (communications) Jairam Ramesh at the party headquarters in Delhi on Monday. (PTI)

“Our view is clear. ‘Sarva Dharma Samabhava’ (respect for all religions) is the Congress’ ideology. But you have to understand every political party has the freedom to tell their views….We are respecting everybody’s belief,” Congress general secretary (organisation) KC Venugopal said at a press conference at the party headquarters in Delhi.

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The statement came after Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders, including Union home minister Amit Shah and party president JP Nadda, targeted the Congress and the opposition Indian National Democratic Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) over Udhayanidhi’s remarks and accused them of “insulting” India’s culture and history.

Senior BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad on Monday questioned the Congress’ silence on the matter. “Rahul Gandhi ji, this is an open insult of Sanatan Dharma by your allies. Why are you silent? Why do you go to a temple? Is it a pretense?” Prasad told news agency ANI.

Addressing a conference organised in Chennai by the Tamil Nadu Progressive Writers Artists Association on the theme of ‘Eradication of Sanatana’ on Saturday, Udhayanidhi, who is the son of chief minister MK Stalin, contended that Sanatan was against the idea of social justice and that it had to be eradicated.

“Few things cannot be opposed, that should be abolished only. We can’t oppose dengue, mosquitoes, malaria or corona. We have to eradicate this. That’s how we have to eradicate Sanatana,” he said in Tamil.

BJP IT cell head Amit Malaviya accused Udhayanidhi of calling for a “genocide” of the followers of Santan Dharma.”

Udhayanidhi reacted in a post on X (formerly Twitter), saying, “I never called for the genocide of people who are following Sanatan Dharma. Sanatan Dharma is a principle that divides people in the name of caste and religion. Uprooting Sanatan Dharma is upholding humanity and human equality.”

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