Other States

AIMIM is ‘B team’ of BJP, says NCP

Members of Hindu organisations protesting in Pune over the recent remarks by AIMIM leader Waris Pathan.

Members of Hindu organisations protesting in Pune over the recent remarks by AIMIM leader Waris Pathan.   | Photo Credit: Mandar Tannu

Parties unite to criticise ‘divisive’ remarks by former Byculla MLA Waris Pathan

A day after All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) leader and former MLA Waris Pathan made a controversial statement pitching two communities against each other, the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) slammed the party calling it Bharatiya Janata Party’s ‘B team’ which is trying to disturb communal harmony in the country.

The AIMIM’s State unit has distanced itself from the statement and has sought explanation from Mr Pathan.

“Due to ongoing and fearless democratic protests against the CAA and NRC, the BJP is losing the battle for our unity and has helplessly activated their B-Team. We urge people to be aware and avoid such inflammatory separatist ideology,” said NCP’s Maharashtra unit chief and State Irrigation minister Jayant Patil.

The Congress said AIMIM and BJP are two sides of the same coin. “It has been proven time and again that the AIMIM works on its agenda of communal polarisation on the orders of the BJP. Extremism of any religion is harmful to the country and therefore both the BJP and the AIMIM should be opposed strongly,” said Maharashtra Congress committee spokesperson Sachin Sawant.

Mr. Sawant said Mr. Pathan’s statement is similar to those by BJP leaders such as Amit Shah, Anurag Thakur, Yogi Adityanath and others. “The intention behind all these statements is to ensure communal polarisation and to break the country’s unity,” he said.

At a rally in Karnataka on Thursday, Mr. Pathan had said, “We have to take azadi (freedom), things that we don’t get by asking, we have to take it by force, remember it...(We may be) 15 crore, but are heavy on 100 (crore), remember this.”

The Shiv Sena also criticised Mr. Pathan for his remarks. “What is your stature in Maharashtra? The state’s Muslims are with the MVA government. AIMIM is repeatedly misleading Indian Muslims and trying to poison their minds. If such comments are repeated, Shiv Sena will respond in the same language,” the party’s Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Raut told reporters in Delhi.

Earlier, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) leader Bala Nandgaonkar issued a video message warning Mr. Pathan against making similar statements in future. “You will face the consequences. Forget Byculla, we will ensure that you are thrown out of the State,” Mr. Nandgaonkar said.

Workers of the BJP also held a protest against Mr. Pathan at Byculla, the constituency he represented from 2014 to 2019.

Speaking to reporters in Nagpur, former chief minister and senior BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis said, “Mr. Pathan should apologise to the nation and the Hindu community. If he doesn’t apologise, the government must take action against him.”

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Printable version | Apr 4, 2020 7:30:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/aimim-is-b-team-of-bjp-says-ncp/article30884803.ece

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