Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh and BJP come forward to defend Togadia whereas Congress, NCP and AAP leaders lashes him out for anti-Muslims rant.
The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) has come to the rescue of VHP president Pravin Togadia over his reported anti-Muslim rant in Gujarat on Saturday. The RSS said the news has been fabricated for some gain and said VHP president never issued such kind of anti-Muslim comments.
Ram Madhav, RSS spokesperson talking to AV over the phone from Nagpur said, “Pravin Togadia has not said anything against Muslims and he has already given his clarification. RSS considers every Indian an equal. Media has fabricated the statement given by Pravin bhai as they have nothing else to show. We expect media to play a very sensible role by respecting the sentiments of people.”
When further asked about Giriraj Singh’s ‘Pakistan’ statement in a public rally, Madhav said, “Every political party and their leaders are issuing statements seeking some political mileage in the ongoing general election. Here media acts as a basher and twists the statements according to their viewers’ interest. BJP has already condemned Giriraj’s statement and they will take appropriate action against him. RSS is an organisation which works for human welfare and upliftment of the society.”
Madhav Bhandari, state BJP spokesperson wants to be away from the issue. He said, “What Pravin Togadia and Giriraj Singh are talking about are their states’ land and issues. Maharashtra is altogether a different state and I had not heard any such statement yet. BJP will do well in Maharashtra.”
Meanwhile, the Election Commission has asked for the footage. Mr. Togadia denied any hate remarks and said, “Some people gathered and told me that Muslims are forcibly throwing us out; I asked them to take help of the police. The story is not about Muslims getting thrown out; it is about Muslims forcing Hindus out of their houses. My statement has been fabricated for TRP. I have published my clarification at several places, one can go through it.”
When AV contacted another Right-wing organisation, Sanathan Sanstha for comment on Togadia’s statement, its spokesperson AbhayVartak said that when (Asaduddin and Akbaruddin) Owaisi brothers are making extreme statements then nobody objects that and even media hardly reacts on it. However, when any right–wing organszation’s representative speaks anything good also, they misinterpret it and controversies emerge out of it.
Togadia reportedly told people in Bhavnagar to target Muslims for buying properties in Hindu majority areas.
“Bring pressure on the government to enact laws where Muslims cannot purchase property in Hindu areas. If such a thing happens, take possession of the property forcibly and pout up a ‘Bajrang Dal’ board on top of the property. We’ll fight it out in court,” Togadia was saying in a video. “When Rajiv Gandhi’s killers have not been given punishment yet, the case will go on,” he reportedly said.
Muslims leaders have strongly reacted on Pravin Togadia’s statements. Husain Dalwai, Senior Congress leader and MP in Rajya Sabha said, “Their job is to spread hatred among the Indians. This is not the first time Togadia is using such words. He is a doctor who is injecting hatred. Pravin Togadia must be hospitalised. This is against our Constitution. If you allow this to happen, where will this country head to?”
Nawab Malik, spokesperson of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) said, “People like Pravin Togadia, Giriraj Singh and their bosses are ‘threat to the unity’ of this country. People can imagine how fanatic they are to form a government. They know people will reject them this time also that’s why the whole organisation started spreading hatred among united Indians.
When asked about Ram Madhav’s statement about their organisation considering every Indian equal, Malik replied, “If RSS considers every Indian equal then why all its lieutenants are giving these ‘divisive’ statements including Giriraj Singh, Pravin Togadia and Modi?
Even the Catholic community strongly condemned the statement given by Pravin Togadia. Dolphy D’souza, Former President and Spokesperson of the Bombay Catholic Sabha said, “We condemn the intimadatory tactics of Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) President Pravin Togadia against Muslims in Bhavnagar. BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate should be answerable for this. Is this what lies in their store for minorities if they are elected to the highest office in this country?”
The Aam Aadmi Party, meanwhile, has condemned the statement and demanded that the Election Commission ask for the registration of an FIR against Togadia.
The Election Commission on Monday sought a report on VHP leader. “They (EC officials) are in the process of acquiring the recording of the statements made by Togadia and after listening to it, they will decide the future course of action,” Bhavnagar District Collector and Returning Officer P K Solanki said in Rajkot on Monday.
Vaidehi Sachin/Najmul Hasan Rizvi