June 2016 News

Uproar In Both Houses Over Prachi's 'Muslim-free India' Remarks

9 June 2016
Rising Kashmir
Sumaiya Yousuf and Mir Liyaqat Ali

Srinagar: Opposition parties Thursday created ruckus in both houses of legislature and sought explanation from the PDP-BJP government over VHP leader Sadhvi Prachi's controversial 'Muslim-free India' statement. In the lesgislative assembly, opposition members rose up and asked government to clear its stand. 'What is Muslim Mukt Bharat?' independent MLA Er Abdul Rashid asked. He was joined by National Conference and Congress members who thumped their benches while seeking the government stance on the controversial statement. Sadhvi Prachi is known for making controversial statements. In the latest instance, while addressing an election rally in Uttar Pradesh she had said: 'Now that we have achieved the mission of making a Congress-free India, it is time to make India Muslim-free. We are working on that.' Leading the attack on the government, State Secretary CPI(M) and MLA Kulgam, M Y Tarigami asked government to clear its stand. 'Doesn't India belong to Muslims as well? India belongs to everyone and not a particular community,' said Tarigami while directing his comments at BJP as he accused the party of creating communal tension in the country. The issue was raised as soon as the House began its proceedings. The NC and Congress legislators stood up from their seats and sought condemnation of the remarks made by Prachi from the House. However, the ruling PDP-BJP government MLAs remained silent on the issue. 'The House should condemn the statement and the government should speak on it,' NC's Ali Muhammad Sagar said. He was joined by other opposition members who also sought answer from the government in the House. 'The government should make its stand clear on the statement,' said G M Saroori of Congress. Deputy Chief Minister, Nirmal Singh intervened, saying, the authenticity of the statement has not been verified yet. 'India is a secular State and people from every community live here. If this is an authentic statement then it should not have been said and it is wrong,' Singh added. The government's answer, however, didn't satisfy the agitating members who continued with the demand that the House should condemn the anti-Muslim remark. The Legislative Council also witnessed uproar over Prachi's statement. As soon as the House started its proceedings, the opposition legislators stood up from their seats and demanded resolution condemning the VHP leader's anti- Muslim statement. Chairman of Legislative Council Haji Inayat Ali tried to pacify protesting legislators assuring them that their demand for resolution would be considered after going through the rules of the House. However, unsatisfied with the assurances, the legislators continued their protest and raised anti-Prachi slogans. 'Such anti-Muslim statements are highly condemnable and we demand House should pass a resolution condemning it,' said NC legislator, Showkat Ganie. The protesting legislators of NC and Congress also raised anti-BJP and anti-VHP slogans in the House. Congress legislator G N Monga said Prachi's statement highlighted communal agenda of BJP and VHP. Demanding a resolution of condemnation from the House, Monga said, 'It shows the communal mindset of these parties who claim to make country Muslim free.' Meanwhile, ruling BJP legislators also stood up from their seats and started shouting anti-separatist and anti-Hizb slogans. BJP legislators accused opposition of supporting Hurriyat. 'It is shameful that the opposition is creating ruckus. Oposition which creates noisy scenes here must condemn (Hizbul Mujhadeen commander) Burhan Wani's statement, ' said Ajatshatru Singh of BJP. 'You should condemn statement of militant Burhan,' said Ashok Khujaria of BJP while pointing towards the opposition. Minister for Law and Justice Abdul Haq, who was present in the House, tried to pacify the opposition members, saying the Leader of the House and Education Minister Naeem Akhtar had made a statement on the issue and so there was no need to raise it again. 'There is no need to create scene; newspapers will carry your protests, why are you wasting time of the House,' he said adding that House has more important public issues to discuss. Following minister's intervention, the opposition members staged walk out from the House.