New Delhi: Eight opposition members of parliament on Friday slammed the central government for its stand on the status of the Delhi-based Jamia Millia Islamia and the Aligarh Muslim University.
“We strongly condemn and express our displeasure and deep concern against the nasty move of the central government to strip the Aligarh university and Jamia Millia Islamia of their minority status,” they said in a joint statement here.
The parliament members are K.C. Tyagi of Janata Dal-United, Sukhendu Roy of Trinamool Congress, Pramod Tiwari of the Congress, D.P. Tripathi of the Nationalist Congress Party, D. Raja of the Communist Party of India, J.P. Yadav of the Rashtriya Janata Dal, Bhagwant Mann of the Aam Aadmi Party, and Ritabrata Banerjee from the Communist Party of India-Marxist.
“We condemn the statement of the Attorney General of India, who has blatantly tried to outrage the rich tradition of the Ganga-Jamuni tehzeeb by mentioning before the Supreme Court that these two institutions were not minority institutions,” the statement added.
The MPS alleged that the AG had tried to “undermine the apex body of democratic India by making a flimsy claim that the legislature never intended the two to be minority institutions”.
“We members of parliament believe it is a sinister move to promote an unholy communal agenda and dilute the special character of these two premier seats of learning,” Tyagi said.
“These institutions have made an unparalleled contribution towards Independence and have contributed to the field of social science, the betterment of minorities and Indian society,” he added.
The members said intellectuals, civil society and all secular political parties should unanimously condemn the move that can “sabotage the very idea of India”.
The parliamentarians said they would launch a signature campaign and also request President Pranab Mukherjee to intervene in the matter, besides raising the issue during parliament’s budget session.