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Conversions, Ghar Wapsi campaigns can't scare Indian Muslims: Asaduddin Owaisi
Sunday December 21, 2014 11:22 PM, Staff Reporter

President of All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) and Hyderabad MP while participating in a discussion in the Lok Sabha on the issue of religious conversion urged the BJP government to stop those behind the 'ugly agenda' at the same time stating that the such programs would not scare the Muslims.

Asaduddin Owaisi

"We are not scared of conversions and would continue to follow our religion", Owaisi said in the Lok Sabha last Thursday.

His remark that BJP has an "umbilical cord" attached to "people behind these campaigns" drew an angry response from BJP benches.

Owaisi however continued his speech and urged the government to stop those behind the conversion and 'ghar wapsi' campaigns.

Jyotiraditya Scindia of the Congress, who opened the discussion, was repeatedly interrupted by BJP members when he accused the RSS, its Dharm Jagran affiliate and Bajrang Dal of being behind conversion and 'ghar wapsi' campaigns.

"Our country is a bouquet of not one kind of flower but many. The fragrance of its many flowers spreads across the world… I am proud to be a Hindu but my religion does not teach me to be narrow-minded, or have a narrow ideology.

"My dharm is a philosophy… It is being said that this (Agra incident) is just the start. They now want to convert Christians… this polarisation is part of a programme. If the soul of this country gets corrupted, there will be no way out," Scindia said, demanding a statement from the Prime Minister.

Later while talking to the reporters outside the parliament, Owaisi said behind the 'Ghar Wapsi' campaign is the 'vote-bank' politics of the ruling BJP.

He also said that controversial statements being regularly made by BJP and RSS leaders only indicate that the BJP in a systematic way wants to make its support base stronger.

"Statements of RSS - like making India a Hindu Rashtra, making Ram Mandir before 2019, Gita being given national book status, all these statements have only one motive - to make Hindu vote bank stronger", he said.

"As far as conversions go, all these are related to RSS," he added.

The MIM chief also said that he would oppose the anti-conversion law saying "implementation of the legislation will be an insult to former prime minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru".

Some others in the country are of the view that the Hindutva outfits are raising the issue just to push anti-conversion law. They, however, say that anti-conversion law is not the solution.

"Hindu caste system and untouchability are the reasons behind conversion. RSS should look into these issues instead of pushing legislation like anti-conversion law", Abid Hussain, an academician said.

In India, conversion of Dalits to other religions is a norm. Two days back Mahadalits from a village in Bihar converted to Christianity saying that they had changed their religion to lead a life of honour and dignity.

A controversy was stoked in India after Bajrang Dal and other Hindu organisations last week claimed that about 300 Muslims had embraced Hinduism. Later investigations however revealed that the Muslims were lured to a fire ceremony.

"We were taken to a place where a fire ceremony was on," Munira told ABP news channel. "We were made to sit there. We became panicky...

"We were told to pray to Hindu gods. We did whatever they told us", Munira, one of the 300, said alleging that they were lured to the event on the promise of giving them a plot of land and ration cards.

"But now we are again reading the Holy Quran and our family members offered namaz today," she added.

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