Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Monday said it was "appalling" that Bengali revolutionary poet Kazi Nazrul Islam was being dubbed a "minority icon".
Inaugurating the Nazrul Tirtha, a cultural and educational centre dedicated to the poet, in the satellite township of New Town, Banerjee asserted that greats like Islam and Nobel laureate poet Rabindranath Tagore were beyond any minority or majority labels.
"Some people have started a whisper campaign saying Nazrul is a minority icon. This is appalling," she said at the inaugural on the 115th birth anniversary of Islam.
"Icons like Kazi Nazrul or Rabindranath cannot be labelled as minority or majority icons. They are icons of all Bengalis," she said.
He was nicknamed ‘Bidrohi Kabi’ or the rebel poet because of the rebellious tenor of his works espousing political and social justice during the colonial rule.
The polymath was born in Bengal`s Churulia in 1899 and died in 1976 in Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is regarded the national poet of Bangladesh.