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Digvijaya Singh Attacks Centre for Not Granting Asylum to Rohingyas

The senior Congress leader questioned the government for giving aid to Bangladesh for settling Rohingya refugees while opposing their asylum in India.

PTI

Updated:September 29, 2017, 10:57 PM IST
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Digvijaya Singh Attacks Centre for Not Granting Asylum to Rohingyas
File photo of Congress leader Digvijaya Singh.
Raipur: Senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh on Wednesday questioned why the Centre was refusing asylum to the Rohingya community on security grounds while giving aid at the same time to Bangladesh for their settlement.

He also attacked Union minister Hansraj Ahir for criticising BJP MP Varun Gandhi who has advocated shelter to the refugees in India after security vetting.

"The government is not allowing Rohingya Muslims to come to India as it felt there were terrorists among the refugees. But the union home minister had not been able to name a single person (from Rohingya community) who is linked with a terrorist organisation," the former Madhya Pradesh chief minister told a press conference here.

"Rohingyas have sought refugee status and many Hindus are also among those fleeing Myanmar. As per the charter of human rights charter, nobody can be denied shelter based on their caste. When the people from East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) came to India following atrocities, they were given shelter as refugees despite most of them were Muslims," he said.

The senior Congress leader questioned the government for giving aid to Bangladesh for settling Rohingya refugees while opposing their asylum in India.

"On one hand, our government was refusing to give refugee status to Rohingyas while on the other hand, it is giving grant to Bangladesh to settle them. Why the government is doing so?" he asked.

Responding to a query on the views expressed by Varun Gandhi on Rohingya Muslims, Singh said, "I condemn Hansraj Ahir, (Minister of State, Home) for criticising Varun Gandhi over his views on the issue".

Referring to Varun's remarks, Ahir had said anyone who has national interests in mind, won't make such statements. Expressing concern over the drought-like situation in the BJP-ruled Chhattisgarh, Singh alleged private insurance companies are getting benefitted through the Prime Minister Crop Insurance Scheme.

"The state is reeling under drought and farmers are in a deep trouble. The PM Crop Insurance Scheme is nothing but just a way to favour and benefit private insurance companies," he alleged.

He claimed the government itself had told Parliament that a premium of Rs 16,50,000 crore was deposited by farmers in the Kharif year 2015-16 while insurance companies had earned a profit of Rs 10,50,000 crore after settling the claims.

"This clearly indicates that this scheme is meant to benefit insurance companies and not the cultivators," he alleged.

Replying to a query on Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi's recent visit to Dwarikadhish temple in Gujarat, Singh said unlike the Congress, the BJP has been misusing religion.

"Congress respects the religion. This is not a Hindu rashtra. This is the country of everybody, including Hindus, Sikhs, Muslims and Christians. Our makers of the Constitution have given us a socialist secular state," he said.

When asked about the dynasty in the Congress and the leadership resting only with the Nehru/Gandhi family, he replied, "I would say we don't have any option other than them".

"I will never compromise with my commitment and loyalty towards the Congress party and the Nehru-Gandhi family," he said.

Attacking the ruling BJP in Chhattisgarh, Singh said not only the chief minister and ministers, but bureaucrats too are steeped in corruption.

"Recently, I heard that the issue of charges of corruption against minister Brijmohan Agarwal will be dealt by BJP chief Amit Shah not the law. It means Shah is being considered as the law in the BJP government," Singh said.

A controversy had erupted over the sale of a forest land near a Buddhist site in Mahasamund district to the wife of Agarwal, state Agriculture Minister, in 2009.
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