Katheria claims he did not target any community

March 01, 2016 01:56 pm | Updated November 17, 2021 04:18 am IST - New Delhi

Union Minister Ram Shankar Katheria. File photo.

Union Minister Ram Shankar Katheria. File photo.

Under attack over his speech, Union Minister Ram Shankar Katheria on Tuesday claimed that he did not target any community.

“What has been published in one of the newspapers is false. I had not taken the name of any community. I had said that the culprits, who had murdered the VHP leader, should be given death sentence. I had also said that the Hindu community should unite for their safety. I will send a notice to the newspaper,” the Minister of State for HRD said.

Mr. Katheria, along with BJP MP from Fatehpur Sikri Babu Lal, had, on Sunday, attended a condolence meeting held for VHP worker Arun Mahaur, who was killed allegedly by some youths from another community in Agra on Thursday.

At the meeting, Mr. Katheria had said: “This conspiracy that is being hatched against the Hindu community, we have to be alert to recognise it and strengthen ourselves. We will have to fight it because if we do not do it now, today we have lost one Arun, tomorrow it could be another Arun...the killers should also go, we have to set such an example.”

Reacting to Mr. Katheria’s remarks, Leader of the Congress party in Lok Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge, said, “They speak whenever elections are nearing. They talk about dividing the country and not uniting. If they continue to speak like this, there will be repercussions across the country. Today we are raising this issue because Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Rajnath Singh are silent on this issue.”

Asaduddin Owaisi, leader of All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, said he was not surprised by the remarks of the Union Minister.

“This has been the continuous, consistent and obnoxious behaviour of the Modi government. I am sure that no action will be taken,” he said.

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