Congress leader and Rajya Sabha MP Digvijaya Singh is known for sharing provocative views on sensitive topics that have often landed him in trouble. Sometimes, reportedly, he was even reprimanded by the high-command of the Congress party but seems that made no difference.
Singh’s most recent jump into controversy was on Saturday when in a recent conversation with a Pakistan-based journalist on the Clubhouse app, he hinted at “relooking" the decision of revoking Article 370.
Let’s have a look at some of the controversial statements made by former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Digvijaya Singh that certainly made headlines:
June 2021 - REMARK ON ARTICLE 370
During the conversation with Shahzeb Jillani, a Pakistan-based journalist, Digvijaya said, “Democracy was not there in Kashmir when they revoked Article 370, ‘insaniyat’ was not there as they had put everyone behind bars. Meanwhile, ‘Kashmiriyat’ is something that is the fundamentals of secularism. Because in a Muslim-majority state there was a Hindu king and both worked together. In fact, the reservation in Kashmir was given to Kashmiri pandits, therefore, the decision of revoking Article 370 and reducing the statehood of J&K, is a sad decision. And the Congress party will certainly have to relook at this issue."
The decision to revoke Article 370 was taken on August 5, 2019, by the Narendra Modi-led BJP government in a bid to integrate Jammu and Kashmir with India.
October 2019 - ‘RADICALISATION OF HINDUS’
He had reportedly said that the radicalisation of Hindus is as dangerous as radicalisation of Muslims. Referring to Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s 50-min lengthy speech at the UN General Assembly, he had said that it would be difficult for the nation in case there is ‘radicalisation of the majority,’ similar to that in Pakistan.
“The speech on radicalisation by Prime Minister Imran Khan (at UNGA) in which he speaks on Islamophobia and radical Muslims, the counter of that is radicalisation of Hindus. The radicalisation of Hindus is equally dangerous to the radicalisation of Muslims. Jawaharlal Nehru had said, communalism of the majority is more dangerous than the communalism of the minority. Today, the situation in Pakistan where there is a communalisation of the majority, if that happens in India it will not be easy to save the nation then," Republic had quoted Singh as saying.
September 2019 - ‘SOME SAFFRON-CLAD PEOPLE COMMIT RAPES’
Digvijaya Singh had once said that some saffron-clad people were indulging in selling churan and committing rapes by defaming the Sanatan Dharma. While addressing a Sant Samagam (gathering of saints) organised by the Congress government in Madhya Pradesh’s Bhopal, he had said, “Saffron-clad people are selling churan, (some) saffron-clad are committing rapes, rapes are taking place in temples. Is it our religion? God will not pardon those who have defamed our sanatan dharma."
#WATCH Digvijaya Singh, Congress in Bhopal: Today, people are wearing saffron clothes and raping, rapes are happening inside temples, is this our religion? Those who have defamed our 'Sanatan Dharma', not even god will forgive them. pic.twitter.com/psAQcd1R7p— ANI (@ANI) September 17, 2019
June 2019 - ‘BJP, BAJRANG DAL TAKE MONEY FROM ISI’
Singh had accused the BJP and the Bajrang Dal of taking money from Pakistan’s spy agency ISI. “Bajrang Dal (the youth wing of Vishwa Hindu Parishad) and Bharatiya Janata Party are taking money from the ISI. Attention should be paid to this," he had said.
The Congress leader had also gave a communal dimension to his claim. “Non-Muslims are spying for Pakistan’s ISI more than Muslims. This should be understood," he added.
May 2017 - REMARK ON TELANGANA POLICE
On May 1, 2017, Singh had stroked controversy by claiming that the Telangana police has set up a “bogus” ISIS website to radicalise Muslim youth and encourage them to join the terrorist outfit. “Telangana Police has set up a bogus ISIS site which is radicalising Muslim Youths and encouraging them to become ISIS Modules," he had tweeted. Telangana police had later filed a case against the Congress leader.
Telangana Police has set up a bogus ISIS site which is radicalising Muslim Youths and encouraging them to become ISIS Modules.— digvijaya singh (@digvijaya_28) May 1, 2017
August 2016 - REFERRRED POK AS ‘India-Occupied-Kashmir’
Singh once referred to Pakistan-Occupied-Kashmir (PoK) as India-Occupied-Kashmir. However, he later clarified that he meant to say PoK and that “Kashmir is an integral part of India." He has also once referred to terrorists Osama bin Laden as “Osamaji" and Hafiz Saeed as “saheb".
July 2015 - REMARK ON YAKUB MEMON’S HANGING
Singh had in 2015 stoked controversy by saying, in a series of tweets, that the credibility of government and judiciary was at stake after the “urgency" shown in 1993 Mumbai serial blasts convict Yakub Memon’s case. “Yakub Memon hanged. Exemplary urgency and commitment has been shown by Govt and Judiciary in punishing an accused of Terror. I hope similar commitment of Govt and Judiciary would be shown in all cases of terror irrespective of their caste creed and religion," he had said in a tweet.
“I have my doubts the way the cases of other Terror accused are being conducted. Let’s see. Credibility of the Govt and Judiciary is at stake," Singh had tweeted.
July 2013 - ‘SANGH TRAINS ACTIVISTS TO MAKE BOMBS’
Singh had alleged that Sangh trains its activists in making bombs. Speaking to reporters, he had claimed that he has video clips of four VHP and RSS activists accepting that “they were trained by Sangh in making bombs".
July 2013 - REMARK ON BATLA HOUSE ENCOUNTER
Asserting that he would not apologise to BJP over his remark that the Batla House encounter was fake, he had told reporters, “I will never apologise. I still maintain that encounter was fake." This statement invited reactions from different political parties.
July 2013 - CONTROVERSIAL REMARK ON Raghavji
The Congress leader had posted a controversial tweet on former BJP minister Raghavji. He had mentioned “Ram and Raghavji" and it was written a few days after Raghavji was arrested following allegation of sexual assault levelled by his servant.
Slogans being raised in Bhopal : Bachcha Bachcha Ram Ka, Raghavji Ke Kaam Ka !— digvijaya singh (@digvijaya_28) July 10, 2013
JANUARY 2011 - ‘PHONE TALKS WITH Hemant Karkare’
Singh had claimed that hours before 26/11 attacks, slain Mumbai top police officer Hemant Karkare had called him and said that his life was under threat. “I had spoken to him three and a half hours…it was between 6 and 7 pm on 26/11….I was very shocked when I came to know that he was killed," he had said.
DECEMBER 2010 - ‘ADVANI HELPS RSS INFILTRATE GOVT, MEDIA’
He had accused BJP leaders, such as LK Advani, of planting secret agents in government and the media. “RSS has people everywhere. Advani had even planted RSS men in the media when he was information and broadcasting minister," Hindustan Times quoted Singh as saying.