NATIONAL

It should not retake power if Hindus are still under danger ten years after the BJP took office: Azad Kirti

Kirti Azad, the TMC candidate and a former cricket player from India, attempted to undermine the BJP’s Hindu nationalism platform by stating that if the saffron party continues to use the “Hindu Khatre mein” (Hindus in danger) narrative after ten years in power, it calls into question whether the party really needs to win back power.

 

Aside from calling the Uniform Civil Code (UCC) controversy a “ploy to communalise the polls,” the former BJP MP-turned-TMC candidate from West Bengal’s Bardhaman-Durgapur Lok Sabha constituency said that the saffron party “lacks an impressive report card to present before the masses”.

In an interview with PTI, Azad emphasized the variety of India and contested the viability of enforcing the UCC in a country with such a diverse cultural environment. He also emphasized that history refutes the BJP’s assertions that Hindus were insecure under earlier regimes.

Hindus never felt threatened during the Mughal era, nor were they in danger during the British era, nor were they under attack throughout the several regimes that followed Independence. He said, “So how come, after a decade of power for a Hindu nationalist party, Hindus are suddenly in danger?”

Azad went on, “Hindu parties should be removed from office if they are unable to save the Hindu people.”

“On its 10-year report card, the BJP really has nothing to show for itself. For this reason, he said, they turned to the discourse of “Hindu Khatre mein hain” and instilled dread and insanity in regard to other groups.

As a part of the cricket team that won the 1983 World Cup, Azad said that the team’s foundation throughout that momentous campaign was communal unity.

“We had Sikhs in Balwinder Sandhu, Muslims in Syed Kirmani, Christians in Roger Binny, and Hindus on the squad when we won the Cup. We all battled together to win India’s first World Cup. Together, these many faiths fought the British for the independence of their nation. He said, “And the BJP talks about how Hindus are in danger.”

Azad questioned the BJP’s inability to carry on its election-year promises to enact the UCC and rejected the party’s advocacy for the Code as politically driven and unworkable given India’s heterogeneous sociocultural makeup.

Since its founding, the BJP has insisted that they would introduce UCC. They also committed to this in 1998 and 1999. UCC was on their poll agenda in 2014. When the BJP has an overwhelming majority in government for the last ten years, what prevented them from enacting the UCC? It’s all political talk, nothing more,” he said.

According to Azad, the implementation of UCC is feasible in nations like Germany, which was founded by a single racial group, but not in countries like India.

People from many groups, backgrounds, and faiths are present here. Everywhere in the nation, there are holidays observed in various ways, the speaker said.

During its campaign, the BJP pledged to impose the UCC throughout the nation in the event that it won a third consecutive term in office.

“The Sanatan Hindu dharma has many colours… from red, blue, and black to saffron,” Azad retorted to the BJP’s efforts to link saffron with Hinduism. It is ridiculous that the BJP is trying to portray saffron as the only color.”

In reference to the BJP’s attack on the Congress over inheritance law, Azad called it “just another attempt to communalize the elections” and “a diversion from matters of governance.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said at a recent election rally in Rajasthan that the Congress would divide riches to “those who have more children” and “the infiltrators” if it won.

Despite the AAP and TMC being a member of the opposition front on a national scale, the INDIA bloc was unable to acquire momentum in states like Punjab and Bengal. The former cricket player said, “Ground-level alliances were not possible in some states due to state-level political equations.”

It’s possible that some have left the bloc. That being said, leaders like as Nitish Kumar and others would retreat if the BJP is unable to get 200 seats. We’ve seen this before, and it might happen once again,” he said.

However, Azad pointed the blame to Bengal’s Congress for the opposition bloc’s failure to gain traction in the state.

Bengal didn’t experience it since the Congress postponed it. Depending on your proportion of votes or number of seats, you choose seat-sharing. Congress has two Members of Parliament, no MLAs, and just 3.8% of the vote in Bengal. However, they choose to sit through talks about seat sharing,” he remarked.

But he didn’t think the NDA, headed by the BJP, was doing better in the polls.

The Brahmin Party has used candidates who are not its own. Surprisingly, they are not even running for as many seats as they are talking about, despite having crossed 400 seats, he added.

Son of former Bihar Chief Minister Bhagwat Jha Azad, Azad was a BJP MP from Darbhanga seat before joining the saffron party in the late 1990s during the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-LK Advani period.

Ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the three-term MP subsequently left the party due to disagreements with the current leadership and joined the Congress.

Afterwards, in 2021, he joined the TMC, and in 2022, he was appointed party leader for the Goa assembly elections.

Azad faces opposition in the Bardhaman-Durgapur seat from Sukriti Ghoshal of the Left-Congress alliance and Dilip Ghosh of the BJP.

When asked whether the BJP had labeled him an outsider, Azad said, “If I am an outsider, then the BJP should first answer why Narendra Modi, who was Gujarat’s Chief Minister at the time, ran for office in Varanasi in 2014.”

He went on, “I can run for office from anywhere in the nation because I’m Indian.”

Related Articles

Back to top button