Opposition, government clash in LS over attacks on churches

New Delhi(PTI): “If I get permission, I am ready to table a full-fledged statement on the floor of the House to show how many attacks had taken place on churches and other religious places under whose regime,” Singh said. The Home Minister also saw a “deliberate attempt” to repeatedly raise incidents of alleged communal violence anywhere in the country in Parliament.

Recent attacks on religious places led to a verbal clash in Lok Sabha on Wednesday with Home Minister Rajnath Singh seeking to blunt opposition onslaught by expressing readiness to table a detailed statement to show how many such incidents had taken place in which regime.

“If I get permission, I am ready to table a full-fledged statement on the floor of the House to show how many attacks had taken place on churches and other religious places under whose regime,” Singh said. The Home Minister also saw a “deliberate attempt” to repeatedly raise incidents of alleged communal violence anywhere in the country in Parliament.

His remarks on “deliberate attempt” to repeatedly raise the issue in Parliament angered a section of the opposition with Congress, IUML and Left parties staging a walkout. Singh’s statement came during the Zero Hour in reponse to K C Venugopal (Cong) who expressed concern over the rising attacks on churches and other religious places in different parts of the country.

“Targetting minority community institutions has become the order of the day…It is a highly dangerous trend”, Venugopal said regretting that this was happening despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s assurances to provide protection to the minorities. Venugopal also referred to some controversial remarks by a General Secretary of the Hindu Mahasabha.

Certain remarks by the Congress member were disallowed by Speaker Sumitra Mahajan after Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Rajiv Pratap Rudy objected to them. Supporting Venugopal, Leader of Congress Mallikarjun Kharge said there was no alternative but to raise the issue as no one is being brought to book despite so many incidents. Home Minister said it was the government’s thinking to see that a sense of confidence develops in the minorities and to provide security to them so that everyone can practice his faith without fear.