New Delhi: Congress on Friday downplayed Haryana
Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda`s statement that he was
against same gotra marriages saying it was his personal view
and he did not support any form of violence.
"He stated that it was his personal view and it does not
mean in any manner that he is supporting any violence or
violation of any law. A person is entitled to express his
personal view about marriage," party spokesperson Abhishek
Singhvi told reporters here.
His reaction came a day after Hooda`s statement in Rohtak
in which he said, "in my views, marriage within the same gotra
is not appropriate."
He had at the same time maintained that the Khap
Panchayats must also work as per the law of the land in
sorting out marriage disputes.
Asked about the Congress` stand on marriage within the
same gotra, Singhvi said it has been the party`s stated stand
there should absolutely be no place for violence or coercion
in such personal matters.
The Congress leader also played down Union Minister
Sharad Pawar`s remarks yesterday in which he had in an
apparent dig at Congress warned "secular" parties against
taking minorities for granted in the belief that they have no
alternative but to support them.
"Minority welfare is a long drawn process, but at least
we should make a beginning. NCP is working in that direction.
Some big parties -- we do not claim we are a big party with
150 years of experience -- tend to take the minorities for
granted," Pawar had said at an NCP function.
Singhvi refused to accept it as an attack on Congress,
saying both Pawar and NCP general secretary D P Tripathi have
categorically clarified that they did not refer to Congress or
intended to criticise it.
Asked why the party was sleeping over the Rangnath Mishra
Commission, which suggested a number of measures for the
betterment of minorities, Singhvi said, "There is no question
of sleeping over it. Congress has begun it but such decisions
do not happen in a moment."