- Samajwadi Party President Akhilesh Yadav puts Jinnah, Gandhi, Nehru and Patel on the same pedestal in one of his speeches at the Hardoi event in UP.
- Yogi Adityanath detests the statement made by Mr Yadav and refers to it as “Talibani mentality”
- BSP Chief Mayawati and AIMIM President Asaduddin Owaisi are critical of the comment too.
Samajwadi President Akhilesh Yadav, on Sunday, attended the Hardoi event in Central Uttar Pradesh ahead of the forthcoming elections. Akhilesh lauded the contributions of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel (The Ironman of India) in the course of an hour-long speech and while at it, uttered a name that sparked a massive controversy.
Akhilesh stated that Vallabhbhai Patel, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Mahatma Gandhi and Muhammad Ali Jinnah passed out from the same institute and went on to become barristers who eventually battled for India’s freedom. Neither of them ever retreated from any struggle. His Samajwadi party had conventionally performed well in UP. Amid the peak of the BJP wave in 2017, Hardoi continued to exist under the Samajwadi Party.
Factually all four people were alumni of the University College London. Muhammad Ali Jinnah was in the Links Inn Wing, Gandhi in the Inner Temple and Sardar Temple in the Middle Temple of the College. They all challenged the British rule too. However, a striking difference prevailed amongst Jinnah and the remaining others.
Unlike Sardar Patel, Mahatma Gandhi and Nehru who confronted the British with the sole purpose of uniting India, Jinnah was bent on the creation of a separate country for the Muslim minority.
The BJP had invariably abhorred all forms of Jinnah glorification. The party didn’t hesitate to oust members who failed to adhere to party lines. For instance, Jaswant Singh was thrown out of the party in 2009 for writing a book on Jinnah. Another was the party pantheon LK Advani who paid a visit to Pakistan where he aggrandized Jinnah at his grave in 2005. Mr Advani was not expelled from his position of the then BJP Chief, however, the downfall of his political career commenced from that moment onwards.
AIMIM President Asaduddin Owaisi and BSP Chief Mayawati also lashed out at Yadav for speaking of Mahatma Gandhi, Sardar Patel, Nehru and Jinnah in unison as leaders who sought after India’s independence.
Adityanath quoted that he was ashamed on hearing Akhilesh’s statement comparing Jinnah who split up the country and Sardar Patel who consistently worked towards unifying the country. He went on to say that the remark was highly condemnable and that Yadav ought to repent over what he said.
Placing someone who served as the underpinning of India’s unity and integrity alongside being the nation’s architect, to someone who jeopardised the country’s peace and stability was downright outrageous, he added. Adityanath said that under the guidance of Narendra Modi, the motto of ‘Ek Bharat, Shresth Bharat’ is being pursued.