Beef row: With BJP under fire, Amit Shah pulls up leaders over controversial remarks
With BJP under fire over controversial remarks of its leaders on Dadri and beef row, party chief Amit Shah has cracked the whip and warned them against making such remarks after Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed 'extreme displeasure' on the comments.
New Delhi: With BJP under fire over controversial remarks of its leaders on Dadri and beef row, party chief Amit Shah has cracked the whip and warned them against making such remarks after Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed "extreme displeasure" on the comments.
Shah has pulled up Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, Union Minister Mahesh Sharma, MP Sakshi Maharaj and MAL Sangeet Som, warning them against making such comments that threaten to derail the development agenda of the Modi government, a party source said.
"The party president has warned them against making such statements. Such controversies in a way derail the development agenda of the party as well as the Modi government," the source privy to the development said.
Shah told them that the lynching of a man in Dadri over rumours that he had eaten and stored beef was essentially a failure of the state government in maintaining law and order and BJP had nothing to do with it.
Their controversial remarks deflected the attention from the Samajwadi Party dispensation and turned the spotlight on BJP, the sources said.
The top party brass swung into action after Modi, who has been criticised for not doing enough to rein in party hotheads, conveyed his anger over the controversy sparked by the comments of these leaders.
"Modiji is extremely upset over these controversies," the source said.
Khattar was recently reported to have said that Muslims can live in India but they will have to give up eating beef. He was forced to retract following a backlash over his comment.
Both Sharma and Som had visited the Dadri village where the Muslim man was lynched. While Sharma had termed the murder as an "accident", Som had alleged that police was framing innocents and warned of retaliation like Muzaffarnagar, a place ravaged by riots in 2013.
The Union Culture Minister and Hindutva leader Sakshi Maharaj have been at the centre of a series of controversies over their right-wing comments.
Asked whether Shah had warned them over remarks on beef issue, Union Minister Mahesh Sharma said "nothing like this" had happened while MP Sakshi Maharaj said no explanation was sought from him.
"There is nothing like this. I have no such information," Sharma said.
Maharaj claimed that he met Shah over issues related to his constituency Unnao in UP.
"No explanation was sought from me and nor have I given any," he said.
Asked about his controversial remarks that there was a reaction to every action after a man was lynched in Dadri over rumours that he had eaten and stored beef, Maharaj said he never justified the incident and "a murder is a murder".
"I had come to discuss problems of my constituency. After Bihar, UP will have elections and I have to do something there. So, should I not discuss issues of my area?" he told reporters.
Som said they were party workers and had come to meet the BJP chief over issues related to it. "We are workers of the party and had come to meet our national president. So discussions must be relating to party only," he said.
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