Political uproar over Amit Shah`s `Azamgarh a base of terrorists` remark

Bharatiya Janata Party`s general secretary and Narendra Modi`s close confidante Amit Shah has once again stoked a big controversy by terming Azamgarh a "base of terrorists".

By Biplob Ghosal | Updated: May 05, 2014, 13:37 PM IST

Zee Media Bureau/Biplob Ghosal

Lucknow: Bharatiya Janata Party`s general secretary and Narendra Modi`s close confidante Amit Shah has once again stoked a big controversy by terming Azamgarh a "base of terrorists".

Campaigning for BJP`s Azamgarh candidate, Ramakant Yadav who is taking on SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav, Shah said, “Azamgarh is the base of terrorists as there is no fear of the government, which is advocating their release."

With this remark, the BJP`s in-charge for Uttar Pradesh has given fresh ammunition to the rival parties to hit back.

Strongly condemning former Gujarat home minister, BSP chief Mayawati termed Shah as the biggest terrorist of Azamgarh.
Another BSP leader Sudhindra Bhadoria said that Shah is frustrated and has insulted the whole country.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav also criticised Shah and said that ever since his appointment as BJP`s UP in-charge, he has been constantly trying to divide the country.
Akhilesh also appealed to the Election Commission to take action against the BJP leader and demanded an apology from him.

Congress leader Digvijay Singh, a known bete noire of the Gujarat Chief Minister, hit out at Modi and his close aide for carrying out a "communal campaign" and demanded action by the EC against Shah for his controversial remark.

Here are Digvijay`s tweets:

Congress leader Rashid Alvi too demanded Shah`s apology, saying that the BJP leader has not learnt anything from the past even after he was reprimanded by the poll panel.

Alvi was referring to the EC`s decision to ban Shah from campaigning in UP after he made controversial statements amounting to the violation of model code of conduct. However, the EC lifted the ban after Shah gave an undertaking that he wouldn`t disturb public order and tranquillity.

Shah had landed in a major controversy for his remarks that the ongoing General Election was an opportunity to seek "revenge for the insult" inflicted during the riots in Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh last year.

Meanwhile, BJP jumped in to Shah`s defence. Senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy found nothing wrong in what Shah said about Azamgarh and said the future government will make efforts to cleanse the city.