Following Vice President Hamid Ansari’s yesterday’s remarks claiming that there is a feeling of unease and sense of insecurity among the Muslims in the country, there has been huge outrage on social media platforms. And while the outgoing VP stated that the ‘ambience of acceptance’ is under threat in India, users, mostly from the right-wing brigade hit out at Ansari with scathing remarks on social networking sites. Amid heated uproar, many following Hindutva ideologies had even asked Ansari to leave the country and go to Muslim-dominated Pakistan.
With his second term as the Vice President of the country set to end on Thursday, Ansari made the controversial remarks citing rising instances of ‘intolerance’ and ‘cow vigilantism’ within India. In an interview with Karan Thapar for the Rajya Sabha TV, Ansari said that he had even shared his concerns with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“But what passes between the Vice President and the Prime Minister in the nature of things must remain in the domain of privileged conversation,” said Ansari.
Further commenting on the government’s response in the issue, Ansari said, “Well, there is always an explanation and there is always a reason. Now it is a matter of judgement, whether you accept the explanation, you accept the reasoning and its rationale.”
Agreeing with the assessment that the Muslims in the country feel insecure because of the kind of comments made against them, Ansari said, “Yes it is a correct assessment, from all I hear from different quarters, the country; I heard the same thing in Bangalore, I have heard from other parts of the country, I hear more about in north India, there is a feeling of unease, a sense of insecurity is creeping in.”
However, Ansari refused to comment on the views of political parties or people on the issue. “But to me, every time such a comment appeared or came to my knowledge; I mean my first reaction was that, A: the person is ignorant, B: that he is prejudiced and C: he does not fit into the framework that India has always prided to itself on, which is to be accommodative society,” said Ansari.
Ansari had been targeted by the right-wing groups in earlier instances too. The outgoing Vice President was unfairly slammed during the Republic Day ceremony for not saluting the tricolor, though there is no constitutional requirement on doing so. He was also targeted by BJP’s general secretary Ram Madhav in 2015, for not attending the International Yoga Day event at Rajpath in Delhi.
By Priyam Mukhopadhyay