New Delhi, Jul 8: In a statement that is sure to spark off a row, Minority Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid has dubbed the Muslim leaders of India as 'rootless'.
While speaking to a weekly news magazine, the minister opined that the Muslim leaders are "rootless" as they were all chosen by political parties only with the intention of winning the vote share of the community.
"There is a real absence of an organically developed political Muslim class rooted in the community and organically related to it... Most Muslim leaders today are, by and large, rootless and lack organic links with their community. Many of them are from established political families, handpicked by various political parties for their ability to garner Muslim votes," Khurshid said.
To a question on leadership crisis in Muslim community, the Congress leader said, "Today, we seem to lack such Muslim voices in the political arena that can articulate Muslim issues without either being, for at least appearing to be aggressive, or being supinely dependent on existing political parties."
However, when asked to comment on the conservatism among Muslims, the Uttar Pradesh leader pointed out that "every community is plagued by conservatives" and substantiated it with the example of Khap Panchayats, which have recently shot up in the negative light for ordering honour killing of couples for violating caste norms.