‘I am an Indian Muslim and…’: BJP Leader Hits Out at US Leaders over ‘Minority Rights’ Row – News18

Shehzad Poonawalla said India doesn’t need lectures about minority rights. (File Image: ANI)

Shehzad Poonawalla said that he is an Indian Muslim and also a national spokesperson of the BJP, which is the world’s largest democratic party

As American politicians including former president Barack Obama raised questions over protecting rights of minorities in India during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s state visit to the United States, BJP national spokesperson Shehzad Poonawalla said India doesn’t need lectures about minority rights and all the communities in the country get equal benefits from the government.

Poonawalla said that he is an Indian Muslim and also a national spokesperson of the BJP, which is the world’s largest democratic party. He further said that in India Mary, Mathew, Mohammad, Madhav, Shilpa and Sultana get the same benefit.

“I’m the national spokesperson of the world’s largest Democratic Party – @BJP4India led by PM Modi. I’m an Indian Muslim & I speak for my country & party on all important platforms- nationally and globally,” Poonawalla said.

“When we ensure 80cr or 800 million people get free rations , 11 cr or 110 million get toilets , 11cr or 110 million households get tapped water connections , 35 million poor get concrete houses – it goes to Mary, Mathew, Mohammad, Madhav , Shilpa & Sultana,” he added.

He further took a dig at Ilhan Omar, a Democrat Congresswoman, saying he do not need lectures about minority rights from someone who has made anti-semitic comments and patronised Islamist radicals.

“Don’t need lectures about minority rights from someone who has made anti-semitic comments, patronises Islamist radicals & has no track record to speak of on the said subject,” Poonawalla added.

Ilhan Omar is among the prominent progressive Democrats from the so-called “Squad”, who are boycotting Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s address to a joint session of the United States Congress on Thursday. Ilhan Omar said she will not attend the event alleging that the “Modi-led union government in India has repressed religious minorities”.

Congresswoman Ilhan Omar is a Democratic representative of Minnesota’s 5th congressional district in the House of Representatives. She is also a member of the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party.

Former US president Barack Obama said on Thursday that India risks “pulling apart” if the Muslim minority is not respected and called for the issue to be raised with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Activist Subuhi Khan also attacked Omar by saying that Muslims in India are not a minority but the second largest majority.

“First of all, We, Indian muslims are NOT minority but second largest majority in India. Secondly, we are not tolerated but celebrated in our Country. Stop spreading lies for your political gains. Let Indian muslims decide for themselves,” Subuhi said on Twitter.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during a joint press conference with US President Joe Biden, on Thursday said there is no question of discrimination in India on the grounds of caste or religion because his government follows the Constitution, which is formed on the basic values of democracy.

“India is a democracy. And as President Biden said democracy is in the DNA of both India and America. We have proved that democracy can deliver. When I say deliver it means there is no place for discrimination on the grounds of caste, creed, gender, religion,” Modi said while responding to a question about the steps taken by his government to improve the rights of minorities in India and uphold free speech.