New Delhi: He was suspended from his party for shooting from his mouth before the Gujarat elections last year. That may not have been enough to silence Mani Shankar Aiyar who in Lahore on Monday took yet another veiled dig at BJP for supporting Hindutva.
Speaking at an event in Pakistan, Aiyar - suspended by Congress for calling PM Narendra Modi neech - invoked VD Savarkar to elaborate on the ideology of 'those currently in power in India.' "Situation in India is an abhorrent one. In 1923, a man called VD Savarkar invented a word which doesn't exist in any religious text, 'Hindutva'. So, first proponent of the two nation theory was ideological guru of those who are currently in power in India," news agency ANI quoted Aiyar as saying. He then went on to say that a majority of Indians had never voted for PM Narendra Modi. "70% of Indians didn't vote for Mr.Modi in last elections but lost because they were completely factionated among themselves. It is my hope that a great number of this 70% will come together to put an end to the aberration we've been suffering in our country."
Aiyar then said that he received flak in India for calling Pakistan's founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah as Quiad-e-Azam. "I know many Pakistanis who called MK Gandhi as Mahatma Gandhi, does that make them unpatriotic Pakistanis?" he asked.
This is not the first time that the veteran politician has made a controversial remark. And it is not the first time he has done so in Pakistan. In the past, he has said that he receives more hatred in India than love in Pakistan. Earlier this year, at the height of Indo-Pak tensions, he had said that India is still caught in a “partially 1947 situation” while there is “change of mindset” in the neighbouring country.
Although Congress has distanced itself from Aiyar's recent comments, many feel his remarks would continue to have a bearing on the party which is currently battling hard to retain power in Karnataka.