NEW DELHI: An outfit representing Muslims today accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of remaining silent when ruling party MPs were “spewing fire” against minorities and asked him to declare his government’s policy towards them.
Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind also attacked the Prime Minister on the issue of alleged stifling of freedom of expression in universities and likened reports of Modi’s emotional response to HCU research scholar Rohith Vemula’s suicide to “shedding crocodile tears”.
Jamiat president Maulana Syed Arshad Madani also alleged that minorities, including Muslims and Christians, and Dalits were being attacked during the NDA rule and asked secular forces to join hands to spread the message of “love and peace” in the fight against communalism.
“Why not declare what your policy is? What kind of policy is this that they (BJP MPs) are spewing fire and he is keeping quiet? Come out in the open and declare that it is not our policy.
“Their talk of ‘sab ka saath sab ka vikas'(inclusive growth) is all lie. Is this ‘sab ka saath sab ka vikas’? If your views were right, we would have been with you,” Madani said addressing “National Integration Conference” organised by his outfit here.
He asked the government to control the motor mouths and make it clear that what the ruling party MPs were saying was “its own line or someone else’s”.
Madani also claimed that minorities will not feel safe in the country if the right wing party gets majority in Lok Sabha as well as in Rajya Sabha.
“Situation today is very grim. ‘Ghar wapsi’ is being done. If anyone wants to make India a Hindu state, we will not allow it, we will spill last drop of our blood (to foil such attempt),” he said.
Urging those present at the conference to join the efforts to keep alive secularism, he said any minority community can feel protected only in a secular state.
“Communalism cannot be doused by communalism. We will need to spread love and peace to douse this fire of communalism,” he added.
On the issue of universities, Madani lauded JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar for being firm on his views and said freedom of expression cannot be “snatched”.
“If any (Dalit) child commits suicide while seeking his right, then the Prime Minister cries on stage. But I feel, in the given circumstances, this is like shedding crocodile tears,” he said referring to the Prime Minister’s emotional response to Rohith Vemula case.
The conference was addressed also by senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, CPI(M) politburo member Mohammed Salim, Justice Kolse-Patil, other Muslim clerics and leaders from Christian, Buddhist and Sikh community. Without naming any party, Madani claimed communal forces in the country want to throw Dalits to the era when they were deprived of their rights.
Madani also batted for ensuring minority institution tag for Aligarh Muslim University and elaborated how the Jamiat fought for similar status for Jamia Milia Islamia University during UPA rule.
He also sought to underscore the role Jamiat played during freedom struggle and in ensuring India took shape as a “secular state” post-independence.
During the event, some of the speakers also expressed apprehensions that voting rights of minorities may be taken away.
The event was also attended by SQR Ilyas, father of JNU student Umar Khalid, who is facing sedition charge in connection with February 9 event at the varsity in which “anti-national” slogans were allegedly raised.
The Jamiat expressed hope that Khalid, currently in jail, will be released.
Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar, party’s candidate for 2014 Lok Sabha polls from UP’s Sambhal constituency Acharya Pramod Krishnam and human rights activist John Dayal were also present.