In a controversial statement, BJP MP from West Delhi Parvesh Verma told a gathering in Baghpat that Muslims don’t — and never will — vote for BJP as it is a “patriotic party”.
To make matters worse, he then asked media persons gathered at the event why all terrorists are Muslims. Verma also said that “no power on Earth” could stop the construction of a Ram Temple in Ayodhya. A petition has been filed with the National Minorities’ Commission against Verma, the son of Sahib Singh Verma, and it has slammed the MP’s comments. It is also mulling sending him a legal notice.
“Ram Temple will definitely be built. No power on Earth can stop the temple from being built. We are not interested in or worried about vote-bank politics.
However, Muslims have never voted for the BJP and they won’t do so in the future either. We need to ask why all terrorists are Muslims and why Muslims don’t vote for the BJP. The answer is simple. The BJP is a patriotic party and that is why Muslims don’t vote for us. We won’t be bothered about any community and will build the Ram Temple,” Verma said in Baghpat.
He later “justified” his statement and said, “We don’t have any problem with the Muslim community but they have problems with us. Muslims prefer to stay away from the BJP and choose to vote for every party except for the BJP. My question was simple. Why is every terrorist a Muslim and why don’t they vote for BJP? That is because they don’t want to come into the mainstream and join the development process. Mayawati recently said that if Muslims vote for me then I can form the government. It is clear that all other parties see Muslims as a vote-bank. But Muslims don’t even want to become a part of the mainstream. Are their children are taught to vote against the BJP in madrassas? Are they incited against our party?”
While Verma, when contacted, refused to comment, UP BJP distanced itself from his remarks.
“Whatever he has said are his personal opinions and not the view of the party. We are a party that believes in Prime Minister Modi’s ‘Sabka saath, sabka vikaas’ slogan. We want to take everyone along in the development journey. However, everyone who lives in India should respect Bharat Mata,” UP BJP vice-president Suresh Rana told TOI.
Minority rights lawyer and Congress leader Shehzaad Poonwalla on Monday filed a petition against Verma in the NCM and sent a copy to the Union home ministry, the Election Commission of India (ECI), UP CM Akhilesh Yadav and DGP Javeed Ahmed.
Praveen Davar, NCM member, told TOI, “I have received a copy of the petition and the words used by the MP are unfortunate. I will discuss this in a meeting with the chairman of the NCM and take action accordingly.”
Poonawalla, the petitioner, said, “It is clear that Parvesh Verma and the BJP do not subscribe nor conform to the principles of secularism and democracy as envisaged in the Constitution. Necessary steps, including a ban on Verma campaigning in the 2017 elections and an FIR against him, need to be taken.”