The BJP and the opposition traded complaints to a parliamentary panel Thursday over MP Ramesh Bidhuri’s Islamophobic rant at BSP lawmaker Danish Ali. The BJP has claimed “indecent remarks” about Prime Minister Narendra Modi led to the vile attack.
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BJP MPs Nishikant Dubey and Ravi Shukla have filed complaints against Danish Ali with Parliament’s Privileges Committee. They said that while Mr Bidhuri’s remarks were “quite inappropriate”, he had been led to that language by “continuous heckling and disturbance”.
Complaints were also filed against Mr Bidhuri – over a week after the horrific incident – by Mr Ali and DMK MP Kanimozhi. Immediately after the attack four parties – the Congress, the DMK, the Trinamool and the NCP wrote to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla to demand punitive action. Mr Birla had warned Mr Bidhuri of “strict action” if he repeated such behaviour.
Anger over Mr Bidhuri’s communal slurs escalated today after it emerged that the BJP MP – whom the opposition wants suspended from Parliament, if not arrested – will lead his party’s poll campaign in Rajasthan’s Tonk. The opposition called the appointment “reward for hate”.
Mr Bidhuri has not yet spoken on this row. He is from the Gurjar community – influential across Tonk’s four seats and key to the BJP’s hopes of a strong showing when Congress-ruled Rajasthan votes in November. Tonk is also the seat of senior Congress leader Sachin Pilot.
On Tuesday Danish Ali released footage of him responding to Ramesh Bidhuri’s assault. The clip – in which he is shouting furiously, “He (Mr Bidhuri) must apologise… yeh kya hain?” – was released to counter claims he was attacked as he used casteist slurs against PM Modi.
“… I didn’t utter a single word that could harm the sanctity of the temple of democracy,” Mr Ali said in his post on X. The BSP MP has accused the BJP of “creating a narrative for my lynching”; he claimed Mr Dubey’s comments are meant to enable his “physical lynching”.
Mr Ali, speaking to String Reveals after the outburst, said the incident had “shamed the country” and, in a moment of prescience, said, “We will see if his party will take action or promote him.” The BSP leader also told String Reveals he had been left traumatised by the verbal attacks.
A severely under fire BJP last week served Ramesh Bidhuri a show cause. On Monday he met party boss JP Nadda. Two days later he was deputed to Tonk. Details of his meeting with Mr Nadda have not been made public and it is unclear if the party intends to discipline him.
After the Nadda-Bidhuri meeting Mr Ali said, “If they would have been sincere in taking action, why would they be calling him… what proof do they need, everything is on record…”
Ramesh Bidhuri’s outburst at Danish Ali was during a Lok Sabha discussion on the success of India’s historic moon mission, Chandrayaan-3.
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