Day not far when BJP will try to change country’s name, says Mamata Banerjee on Taj Mahal row

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IndiaToday.in 

Edited by Kritika Banerjee

New Delhi, October 17, 2017 

Isaac GomesReacting to BJP MLA Sangeet Som's remark that Taj Mahal is a blot on Indian culture, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said the day is not far when the BJP will try to change the country's name too. The CM said that people of different race, caste, creed and religion live in the country and one must refrain from making any comment which "goes against the country's unity and integrity". What the West Bengal CM said applies to all irrespective to party lines, for the essence of India lies in her indomitable spirit of fostering fellowship and unity in the midst of diversity. Isaac Gomes, Asso. Editor, Church Citizens' Voice.

 

Reacting to BJP MLA Sangeet Som's remark that Taj Mahal is a blot on Indian culture, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said the day is not far when the BJP will try to change the country's name too.

Mamata Banerjee, who is also the chief of the ruling Trinamool Congress, said the comments made by Sangeet Som on Taj Mahal are a "manifestation of the BJP's political agenda". Hitting out at the BJP, Mamata said that "what the BJP is practising is not democracy but autocracy".

The West Bengal Chief Minister said that people of different race, caste, creed and religion live in the country and one must refrain from making any comment which "goes against the country's unity and integrity". "How can they say this building is built by the Hindus and this by the Muslims or Christians?" asked Mamata Banerjee, adding that such comments are against India's "heritage and age-old values".

Taj Mahal Built By Blood, Sweat of Indians, Says Yogi Adityanath

 

THE LESS WE TALK ABOUT BJP LEADERS THE BETTER

She said she was ashamed to speak on the comments made by Sangeet Som on Taj Mahal. "The less we talk about the BJP leaders the better… They are not doing any development work but making divisive statements with a political agenda," she said. "The day is not far when the BJP will try to change the country's name to rewrite history," Mamata said.  

Controversial BJP MLA Sangeet Som kicked up a row on Monday when he told a gathering in Meerut that Taj Mahal was a blot on Indian culture and "its creator wanted to wipe out Hindus". He said Taj Mahal's creator Shah Jahan imprisoned his father and added that it was unfortunate that people like him were part of the history.

OWAISI'S SHARP REBUTTAL

In a sharp rebuttal to Sangeet Som's remarks on Taj Mahal, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi said that traitors also built Red Fort and asked if Prime Minister Narendra Modi would stop hoisting the national flag there.

Sangeet Som's comments came in the wake of the controversy over Taj Mahal's name not being featured in the Uttar Pradesh tourism booklet. The booklet, which has Gorakhpur temple's name, was released to mark six months of the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh.

(Inputs from IANS)

 

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  1. Isaac Gomes says:

     

    With crucial civic polls due in Uttar Pradesh next month, BJP MLA Sangeet Som has tried the old trick of raking up controversy again. It is not the first time that Som has tried to polarise discourse just before an election.

    Ahead of a by-poll in Uttar Pradesh in 2014, he called for a mahapanchayat on ‘Love Jihad’. On the eve of polling, Som called this year’s UP Assembly elections a ‘fight between Hindustan and Pakistan’ and distributed CDs with clippings from Muzaffarnagar riots, in which he is implicated. 

    While BJP has officially distanced itself from Som's statement at a gathering in Meerut on Sunday 15th October, that the Taj Mahal is "a blot on Indian culture" and a monument "built by traitors".  The fact is that it has only fuelled the controversy that began through statements made by the Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath who publicly expressed reservations about accepting the mausoleum as being representative of Indian culture.  In June this year, Adityanath had said, “Earlier, foreign dignitaries visiting the country used to be gifted replicas of the Taj Mahal and other minarets which did not reflect Indian culture.” At another instance, during a debate on a TV channel, Adityanath had said he wouldn’t even mind changing the name of Taj Mahal. Why change the name?  Build a new Taj Mahal or something like that and exercise the right to give it a name.  Yogiji should remember that history cannot be created by merely renaming roads, bridges and monuments.  History has to be made like Arunima Sinha, creating history on 21 May 2013 by becoming the first amputee from India to scale the Mount Everest and ISRO successfully launching  104 Satellites in a Single Flight on PSLV-C37 on 15 February 2017.  Sensing trouble, especially from UNESCO which along with ASI pumps funds into the conservation of the Taj Mahal, Adityanath has taken a somersault and announced yesterday that he would visit Taj Mahal on October 26.  As CM of U.P. Yogiji cannot ignore the hard statistics (Source: Lok Sabha statement dated 18-07-2017)  that between 2013-2016, Rs 11 crore was spent on Taj Mahal's conservation while Rs 75 crore was earned by the monument in revenue

    The controversy over Taj Mahal as well as a proposal to install a 100 meter high statue of Ram on the banks of river Saryu in Ayodhya where Yogi will be spending this Diwali, could be seen as part of BJP’s election campaign for the upcoming civic polls which are vital for BJP for at least three very immediate reasons.

    First is that civic polls in Uttar Pradesh will be held in November when Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh go to polls. The sentiments from one election could easily rub on the public sentiment in other elections.

    Second is that after November, bypolls are also due in two assembly seats – Gorakhpur and Phulpur. The first is Parliament constituency of UP’s Chief Minister while the other is Parliamentary constituency of its deputy Chief Minister.

    The third reason that UP civic polls are crucial to BJP is that these will be held eight months after Yogi government’s swearing in, and will be for this reason the first real test of party’s popularity. In spite of his tall promises to restore law and order, Yogi has failed miserably on this count and also on the health sector. Since January 2017,  there have been 1250 deaths at BRD Medical College in Gorakhpur, especially in infant and children's wards (Indian Express 30.08.17).  Gorakhpur is the Parliament constituency of Yogi.  As Chief Minister instead of dedicating himself to the immediate needs of Uttar Pradesh, he is busy on five-day visits as the Mahanta of a Muth and also touring India to campaign for BJP as an icon. What an icon of abject failure in India's largest state which has one of the worst law and order situations in the country! 

    And the civic polls will also of course help BJP make course correction in time for 2019 general elections. The strategy for civic polls is mainly what BJP is understood to have discussed in its state working panel meet in Kanpur last week.

    BJP will be fighting the polls on the back of losses in civic polls in Nanded, defeats in bypolls in Gurdaspur and Vengara, and a string of losses in student elections.

    In this political contest in UP, this may not be the last we hear from BJP’s MLA Sangeet Som.
     

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