Amid allegations of 'soft Hindutva' on Congress Vice president Rahul Gandhi, Congress Maharashtra Secretary Shehzad Poonawalla sparked yet another controversy by demanding minority status for Hindus in Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir.
Shehzad has petitioned to the Chief Ministers of the mentioned states for his demand. However, he said that the move by him has been taken in his personal capacity of being a civil rights activist and not as a part of Congress.
Speaking to Oneindia, Shehzad said, "In my capacity as a civil rights activist - who has always fought for the rights of various communities which faced discrimination, and this is the reason why I have taken up the cause of the Hindus who are minorities in certain states, I have written to the Chief Ministers of Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir and will also write to the Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh and other states."
When asked if this was a move to appease a certain community for vote bank, Shehzad said, "By the principle and Supreme Court rule, any community that has less than 50% population in a state can be legally considered minorities, hence I am just following the Supreme Court order, and demanding the rights for the Hindus where they are the minorities."
"I don't think there is anything communal about this move, being a secular Indian I have always stood up for Muslims when they were attacked by Gau Rakshaks, and I will speak up for Hindus when they are denied their legal rights, like the Kashmiri Pandits. If any person has a problem with that, then that person is not truly secular," he signed off.