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By Nithin Sridhar
The year 2015 was full of controversies with politicians making objectionable remarks on various national and international issues. Here are ten such controversial statements:
- Modi is a coward and psychopath: Arvind Kejriwal
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal raised a huge controversy recently by calling PM Narendra Modi a “psychopath” and a “coward.” This was probably the very first time that a chief minister has publicly used abusive and insulting language towards the Prime Minister of the country.
The incident happened after CBI raided the office of Rajendra Kumar, the principal secretary to the Delhi CM on December 15, over charges of corruption against Kumar. Following the raid, Kejriwal took to twitter and lashed out against PM Narendra Modi for the raid. He tweeted:
When Modi cudn’t handle me politically, he resorts to this cowardice
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) December 15, 2015
Modi is a coward and a psycopath
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) December 15, 2015
- PoK is a part of Pakistan and it will continue to remain so: Farooq Abdullah
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah made a controversial statement regarding Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) on November 27. While speaking to the media, Abdullah said: “PoK is in Pakistan and will remain, Jammu and Kashmir is in India and will remain. We need to understand this.“
Abdullah’s remarks, which came across as an appeal to the Indian establishment to recognize POK as a legal part of Pakistan, drew sharp comments. Reacting to the remarks, Jammu and Kashmir Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh of the BJP said: “A 1994 Parliament resolution clearly said PoK is constitutionally part of India.”
- Bring us (Congress), Remove them (BJP): Mani Shankar Aiyar in Pakistan
Former Union minister and Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar made a controversial statement on November 18, while speaking in a panel discussion on Duniya TV, a Pakistani TV news channel.
When the channel anchor asked Aiyar about how to end the current stalemate in India-Pakistan relationship, Aiyar replied: “Hume le aiye, inko hatayiye” (Bring us, remove them) i.e. bring Congress and remove the Modi government. He was also reported to have said: “The first and the foremost thing is to remove Narendra Modi. Only then can the talks move forward.”
Aiyar was severely criticized for what appeared as his attempt to get Pakistan’s help to topple a democratically elected Indian government.
- Paris attacks result of actions of global superpowers: Azam Khan
Following the ghastly terrorist attacks on Paris that resulted in the deaths of more than 100 people, Samajwadi party leader and Uttar Pradesh minister Azam Khan made controversy by stating that the attacks were direct results of the actions of global superpowers in the Middle East.
He stated: “Killing innocents whether in Syria or Paris is a highly deplorable act and the whole world should condemn it. But then, if you created such a situation, you have to face the backlash too.”
He further added: “We should first see who killed the innocents first and who retaliated. Whoever kills innocent people, whether it is America or Russia or any group, is wrong…history will decide who is a terrorist and who is not.”
- We are ready to kill and get killed to protect our mother (cow): Sakshi Maharaj
Sakshi Maharaj, BJP MP from Unnao constituency in Uttar Pradesh made into national headlines after he made a controversial statement in the aftermath of Dadri lynching. He had stated: “We won’t remain silent if somebody tries to kill our mother. We are ready to kill and get killed.” Following the comments, the BJP MP was accused of adding fuel to the communally critical situation that had developed after the lynching.
- Throw stones at a dog, blame Govt?: VK Singh
Following an incident in a Haryana village in which two Dalit children were killed when their house was set on fire, Union minister of state VK Singh created a controversy when he said central government cannot be held responsible if someone stones a ‘dog.’
Speaking about the incident, he had stated: “Here it was a failure of the (local) administration. After that it comes on the (Central) government.” He had added: “So in everything, (to say that) someone threw a stone at a dog, the government is responsible – it is not like that.”
Following criticism from opposition over his apparent equation of Dalits with dogs, Singh had clarified that his statement was not about drawing analogy between them.
7. Rape by 4 Men, Is it Possible?: Mulayam Singh Yadav
While speaking at a function in the month of August, Samajwadi party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav had made a highly insensitive statement suggesting that gang rapes are not practical!
SP leader had said: “Often if one person commits rape, four people are named in the complaint. Four people are named for rape, can it be possible? It is not practical. They probably say one was watching…another was there… If there are four brothers, then all four are named.”
This was not the first time that Mulayam Singh Yadav had made controversial statements regarding the issue of rape. In 2014, he had stated: “Boys will be boys, mistakes happen” and had further added: “First girls develop friendship with boys. After that, when differences occur, they (i.e. the girls) level rape charges. Boys commit mistakes. Will they be hanged for rape?”
8. Something wrong with Nitish’s political DNA: Modi
According to political analysts, this statement by the Prime Minister turned out to be the game changer in the Bihar elections. Nitish Kumar took thorough advantage and retorted, “I am son of Bihar, so my DNA is the DNA of the people of Bihar. Now I leave it to the people of Bihar how to reply to someone who says their DNA is poor,”
Converting it into a major political issue, Kumar started off a DNA collection campaign and sent hair, nail and other DNA samples of thousands of Biharis to PM Modi.
9. Those who consume beef deserve such actions against them: Sadhvi Prachi on the Dadri lynching
The Dadri lynching incident remained one of the biggest news of the year and led to the much highlighted ‘award-wapasi’ campaign. While a number of people harshly criticized the incident, the BJP motor-mouth Sadhvi Prachi did no harm to her image by saying that Mohammad Akhlaq deserved this!
10. Friends, remember if by mistake BJP loses here, and Nitish-Lalu win, the results will be announced in Patna but firecrackers will go off in Pakistan: Amit Shah
Shah’s statement during the Bihar elections led to much outcry across the country. Shah played this card to polarize the voters and strengthen the BJP vote bank. He alleged that anti-national elements are trying to disintegrate the country and only BJP could stop them.(Photo: lizkeever.com)
NEW DELHI - India Navy sending four ships for exercises and port visits with the Philippines, Vietnam, Singapore, Indonesia and Australia to strengthen cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region, its navy said Wednesday, as China's maritime power grows in the area.
The Indian ships will spend more than two months in the region, the navy said in a statement.
Commander Vivek Madhwal, the Indian navy spokesman, said four ships will take part.
The ships will also participate in a multilateral exercise, MALABAR-21, along with the Japanese, Australian and U.S. navies, the statement said.
It said the exercises will enhance coordination with friendly countries, based on common maritime interests and a commitment to freedom of navigation.
"Besides regular port calls, the task group will operate in conjunction with friendly navies to build military relations and develop interoperability in the conduct of maritime operations," the statement said.
The U.S., India, Japan and Australia are part of the Quad regional alliance created in response to China's growing economic and military strength. Washington has long viewed New Delhi as a key partner in efforts to blunt increasing Chinese assertiveness in the Indo-Pacific region.
India is also in a continuing standoff with China over their disputed border in the eastern Ladakh region. The countries have stationed tens of thousands of soldiers backed by artillery, tanks and fighter jets along their de facto border, called the Line of Actual Control.
Last year, 20 Indian troops died in a clash with Chinese soldiers involving clubs, stones and fists in a portion of the disputed border. China said it lost four soldiers.(VOA/HP)
The UK government on Thursday announced that it will move India from the red to the amber list on Sunday, in the country's latest update to the 'Red-Amber-Green' traffic light ratings for arrivals into England amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
This means the visit visas for the UK from India are open, in addition to other long-term visas that have remained open. But travellers from India arriving in England can complete a 10-day quarantine at home or in the place they are staying (not mandatorily quarantine in a managed hotel).
The UK government also announced that arrivals from France to England will no longer need to quarantine if they are fully vaccinated. The step aligns France with the rest of the amber list now that the proportion of beta variant cases has fallen, where those who are fully vaccinated with a vaccine authorised and administered in the UK, the US or Europe do not need to quarantine when arriving in England.
This move also simplifies the system to three categories, as well as the green watch list to give travellers notice where green status is at risk.
To continue cautiously reopening international travel, Austria, Germany, Slovenia, Slovakia, Latvia, Romania and Norway will be added to the government's green list, having demonstrated they posed a low risk to UK public health.
Besides India, Bahrain, Qatar and the UAE will also be moved from the red to the amber list, as the situation in these countries has improved.
The data for all countries will be kept under review and the government will not hesitate to take action where a country's epidemiological picture changes, a statement by the UK government said.
Following an assessment of the latest data, Georgia, La Reunion, Mayotte and Mexico will be added to the red list as they present a high public health risk to the UK from known variants of concern, known high-risk variants under investigation or as a result of very high in-country or territory prevalence of Covid-19.
Arrivals from Spain and all its islands are advised to use a PCR test as their pre-departure test wherever possible, as a precaution against the increased prevalence of the virus and variants in the country.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: "We are committed to opening up international travel safely, taking advantage of the gains we've made through our successful vaccination programme, helping connect families, friends and businesses around the world.
"While we must continue to be cautious, today's changes reopen a range of different holiday destinations across the globe, which is good news for both the sector and travelling public."
Since February, anyone who arrives in the UK from a red list country has been required by law to book a stay in a managed quarantine facility for 10 days.
In order to ensure taxpayers are not subsidising the costs of staying in these facilities, which have gone up, the cost will increase from August 12. Alternative payment arrangements remain available to those who genuinely cannot afford to pay and rates remain the same for children up to 12.(IANS/HP)
A Hindu temple in Pakistan's Punjab province was reportedly vandalized by hundreds of people after a nine-year-old Hindu boy, who allegedly urinated at a local seminary, received bail, a media report said on Thursday.
According to the Dawn news report, the incident took place on Wednesday in Bhong town, about 60 km from Rahim Yar Khan city.
Besides the vandalization, the mob also blocked the Sukkur-Multan Motorway (M-5), the report added.
Citing sources, Dawn news said that a case was registered against the minor on July 24 based on a complaint filed by a cleric, Hafiz Muhammad Ibrahim, of the Darul Uloom Arabia Taleemul Quran.
The sources said that "some Hindu elders did tender an apology to the seminary administration saying the accused was a minor and mentally challenged".
But, when a lower court granted him bail a few days ago, some people incited the public in the town on Wednesday and got all shops there closed in protest, the report quoted the sources as further saying.
A video clip showing people wielding clubs and rods storming the temple and smashing its glass doors, windows, lights, and damaging the ceiling fans went viral on social media.
In response, one Twitter user said: "Ganesh Temple, village Bhong in Rahim Yar Khan, Punjab has been ravaged. Another day, another attack on Hindus in Pakistan."
Another said: "Yesterday, the mob ran amok at Temple over minor boy issue who allegedly urinated, the boy said to be mentally handicapped. Hindu community made an apology for the boy — a case registered against the nine-year-old boy. Those vandalized temples, no FIR registered against them."
District police spokesman Ahmed Nawaz Cheema said Rangers had been deployed in the troubled area and the situation was under control.
A small town close to the River Indus and Sindh-Punjab border, Bhong houses a number of gold traders who originally hail from Ghotki and Dehrki (Sindh), according to the Dawn news report.
A ruling PTI member representing the minority said he had been in touch with the local Hindu community and influential Rais family of Bhong since the issue surfaced.