New Delhi: The Modi government washed its hands of the controversial comments made over “Bharat Mata Ki Jai” saying these were not views authorised by the Centre.
Breaking the government’s silence on statements made by Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Yoga Guru Ramdev and RSS leader Bhaiyyaji Joshi, parliamentary affairs minister Venkaiah Naidu said these were individual opinions.
“My line is very clear these are views not authorised by the government…. Has the government issued any circular?” he asked during an interaction on Tuesday at the Indian Women Press Corps.
He said that in a democracy, people said many things, but in the end it was what the government decided that was binding on all. Describing it as an emotional issue, but not a mandatory.
The debate over chanting Bharat MataKi Jai has been taking several twists and turns. Ramdev said that if there were no laws people refusing to say it would be beheaded. Fadnavis said those who were not ready to say Bharat Mata Ki Jai should leave the country. However, the government and BJP had evaded a response on the issue, while the Opposition had taken on the party over it.
With the BJP making nationalism a key theme of its strategy to take on the Opposition, the issue had been in focus at the party conclave here last month. The political resolution adopted at the national executive meet said refusal to chant victory to Bharat was tantamount to disrespect to the Constitution.
Naidu, while distancing from the controversial statements, said the slogan should be taken positively. “Bhagat Singh said Bharat Mata Ki Jai” at the gallows. He said the slogan meant addressing sensibilities of all.
“Bharat Mata Ki Jai is not merely a slogan. It was a mantra of inspiration to countless freedom fighters during the independence struggle. It is the heartbeat of a billion people today. It is the reiteration of our constitutional obligations as citizens to uphold its primacy,” the party resolution had said.
Last week, the Darul Uloom had issued a fatwa against chanting it.