Tarun Vijay's remarks part of BJP ideology, says Congress, demands sedition charge
The Congress party on Monday said that former BJP MP Tarun Vijay was "spelling out his party's ideology" in his controversial remarks on south Indians and demanded that a case of sedition be registered against him.
Raising the matter during Zero Hour in the Lok Sabha, Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said that the remarks came from no ordinary man.
"He has been editor of RSS mouthpiece Panchjanya and has written various books and numerous columns in various newspapers explaining his party's ideology," Kharge said.
"Tarun Vijay was spelling out his party's ideology and the government should file an FIR against their leader for violating Article 15 of the Constitution," Kharge said, adding that India is a secular country, "but some parties with such ideologies" are indulging in these acts.
"They are creating problems for the entire country. Today they seek apology after humiliating, insulting." Kharge said recalling Bhimrao Ambedkar's words from a 1949 speech warning "We will be slaves again".
"It is dangerous for India's Integrity," said Kharge, likening it with Hitler's ideology.
"An FIR should be registered against him. His remarks are anti-national and divisive. A case of sedition should be filed against him," Kharge demanded.
Saying that attacks on Africans in India had nothing to do with racism, Tarun Vijay told Al Jazeera last week: "If we were racist, why would we have all the entire south... why do we live with them if we are racist. We have black people around us."
Later Vijay apologized. "Feel bad, really feel sorry. My apologies to those who feel (what) I said was different than what I meant."
Earlier, the Congress had given an adjournment motion notice over the issue in the House which was rejected by Speaker Sumitra Mahajan. This agitated the Congress members. They trooped near Speaker's podium and forced repeated adjournments.
Responding to the issue, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said that the former Rajya Sabha MP has already apologised and there is no need to be agitated.
"India is a secular country. It can never never allow to differentiate on the basis of caste, creed and colour," Singh said while seeking to end the controversy.
Singh said that the person about whom Kharge was speaking has already said his remarks were indefensible. The Home Minister also pointed out that Vijay calls himself the "adopted son of a Tamil mother".
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said that Vijay is neither a spokesperson of the BJP nor its General Secretary.
"There can't be racism. We all are united. We all are Indians," he said.
Not satisfied with the government response the Congress members again trooped near the Speaker's podium, forcing Mahajan to adjourn the House for third time in the pre-lunch session till 1.50 p.m.
When the House reassembled, the House took up the Motor Vehicles act.