The Congress leader also said that in a personal capacity, he is ready to make all the sacrifices required of him to protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act
To express solidarity with the protestors raising slogans against the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act, former parliamentarian Mani Shankar Aiyar dropped by at Shaheen Bagh on January 14.
While addressing the crowd, the Congress leader alluded to a few lines of a famous patriotic verse – “Dekhna hai zor kitna bazuye qaatil mein hai”.
Though he didn’t quote the poem verbatim, he said: “We will find out who is stronger – us (the protestors) or the ‘qaatil’ (killer)”.
However, aside from the line being considered a means of encouraging the crowd, people soon began pointing out how he made a veiled reference to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) here, equating them to murderers.
Stating that he was ready to make whatever sacrifices were required to question the CAA, Aiyar said: “I am ready for whatever sacrifices that need to be made. We will see whose hands are stronger, ours or that of the killers.”
Aiyar went on to say that, though the saffron party had come to power on the promise of “sabka saath, sabka vikas (taking everyone on the path of progress and development)”, all they did was to ensure “sabka saath, sabka vinaash (everyone’s destruction)”.
The senior Congress leader added: “The Centre introduced CAA and raked the National Register of Citizen (NRC) debate to distract people’s attention from the real issue -- its failure to contain the plummeting economy. However, the courageous women of Shaheen Bagh have proved to them (the BJP government) that they cannot fool the people anymore.”
Aiyar hailed the protesters for demonstrating against the new citizenship law without taking help from or being endorsed by any particular political party. “You have made it clear that you don’t need the support of any politician. You have forgone your homely duties to be a part of this sit-in protest that has been going strong for the past thirty days,” he said.
He concluded his speech saying the government had no right to ask any Indian citizen to produce papers to prove their citizenship.
Notably, Aiyar has named and shamed members of the ruling party in the past too. During the 2017 Gujarat Assembly elections, he referred to Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a “neech aadmi (a degenerate)”.(With agency inputs)Get access to India's fastest growing financial subscriptions service Moneycontrol Pro for as little as Rs 599 for first year. Use the code "GETPRO". Moneycontrol Pro offers you all the information you need for wealth creation including actionable investment ideas, independent research and insights & analysis For more information, check out the Moneycontrol website or mobile app.