Stigma of terrorism must be washed off from Muslim community: Digvijay

By Faisal Fareed,,

Lucknow: Hindus should strive for earning the confidence of Muslims. There should be confidence building measures so that Muslim community does not feel alienated in the country. The sense of insecurity among Muslims is a dangerous sign for the nation.

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These words of wisdom came from Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh during a function to commemorate the 150th death anniversary of Allama Fazle Haq Khairabadi held at Lucknow on Saturday.

Congress leader Digvijay Singh addressing National Conference on Allama Fazle Haq Khairabadi on 15th Oct 2011 in Lucknow

“We can learn from Pakistan where the fundamentalist forces are rising. Increased number of incidents of terror indicate that Pakistan is not on right path. There are few such elements here also and we should defeat them. Else Pakistan’s stand will be vindicated that Muslims here are living in Hindu country,” remarked Digvijay Singh.

Singh stated that one should be thankful to Hemant Karkare who unearthed the Hindu fundamentalist groups. “I also used to say that Sangh is behind blast and nobody took me seriously and now it has been established,” he said. He stated that the stigma of terrorism has to be washed off from the Muslim community. “People use to say that I am insane and should be sent to mental asylum. Now it has been established that two former armymen were also involved in the blasts,” he said.

Digvijay Singh opined that there should be no hesitation in accepting the fact that Muslims are worse than SC. “As Congress ruled the country we also have to take the responsibility. We should be thankful that Sachar Committee has shown us the real face of Muslims. We accept it and steps are being taken to uplift them, “he said.

Regarding the coming assembly elections in UP, Digvijay stated that elections may come and go but we will be there after that also in this country. “We should not think in terms of 2012 or 2014 elections. Our stress should be on confidence building measures between two communities,” he said.

Digvijay favoured reservation to Muslims on grounds of their backwardness. “It cannot be done on religious background in a secular country but based on their backward status. The restriction on Article 341 be removed so that Muslim can be included in SC list, “he commented.

Digvijay assured that interests of minority institutions will be safeguarded in RTE. Regarding the communal violence bill he stated that it should be made effective so that the perpetrators of communal violence do not get away. “It is ironical that those assaulted Prashant Bhushan were given bail,” he said.

For the better implementation of funds under minority welfare schemes sponsored by centre, he suggested that it can be routed through Maulana Azad Foundation. “There are reports that funds have been misused by the state government. The foundation can directly utilise the funds,” he said.

On Muslims being treated as vote bank, Digvijay stated that the term has been coined by journalists. “Favouring Muslims is not politics of appeasement but politics of justice,” he said. Digvijay also assured the organisers that he will take up their demand of releasing a commemorative stamp on Allama Fazle Haq besides making his grave as a memorial with the Prime Minister. “We had faulted in recognising his contribution and we should correct our mistake,” he said.