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Gujarat Speaker Calls Ambedkar, Modi 'Brahmins'; Why Are You Hurting Party, Asks BJP MP Udit Raj

Speaking at a job fair organised by the Samast Gujarat Brahma Samaj in Gandhinagar recently, Speaker Rajendra Trivedi had described PM Narendra Modi and BR Ambedkar as “Brahmins” and Lord Krishna as an “OBC”.

Meghdoot Sharon | CNN-News18

Updated:April 30, 2018, 4:26 PM IST
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Ahmedabad: BJP MP Udit Raj on Monday accused Gujarat Assembly Speaker Rajendra Trivedi of causing damage to the party with his remark that Dalit icon BR Ambedkar and Prime Minister Narendra Modi were “Brahmins” by virtue of their “knowledge”.

Speaking to CNN-News18, Trivedi cited the Bhagavad Gita to defend his remarks. “Caste is decided by a person’s work and not his birth. A man is a Brahmin by the work he does in his life. A learned person is a Brahmin as per the Gita,” he said.

Slamming Trivedi for his remarks, North-West Delhi MP Udit Raj said, “The remark is unfounded, objectionable and undesirable. He (Trivedi) doesn’t realise that he is causing damage to the party with such statements.”

Speaking at a job fair organised by the Samast Gujarat Brahma Samaj in Gandhinagar recently, Trivedi had described Modi and Ambedkar as “Brahmins” and Lord Krishna as an “OBC”.

“Brahmins made the gods. I have always said that Lord Ram was a Kshatriya, but it was the rishis who made him god,” he was quoted as saying by The Indian Express.

“Today we would call the shepherd of Gokul an OBC. Who made this OBC a god? It was Sandipani Rishi, a Brahmin,” Trivedi said.

Trivedi referred to Brahmins as the “cream that settles on top of milk when it is boiled” and said anybody who is “learned” is a Brahmin. “I have no hesitation in saying that Ambedkar is also a Brahmin because his surname, a Brahmin surname, was given by his teacher, a Brahmin. There is nothing wrong in calling a learned person a Brahmin. I will say proudly that Modiji is also a Brahmin,” Trivedi said.

The PM has in several election campaigns invoked his humble background as a tea-seller from a backward community to connect with the masses.

Independent MLA from Vadgam constituency in Gujrat, Jignesh Mevani, who is also convener of the Rashtriya Dalit Adhikar Manch, believes that Rajendra Trivedi’s statement has exposed his upper caste mindset. Mevani also said that the Gujarat Assembly speaker has chosen to ignore all the atrocities that Dalits have had to face on a daily basis in Gujarat.

A lawyer by profession and a Brahmin by birth, Rajendra Trivedi is two-time Member of Legislative Assembly from Raopura constituency of Vadodara district.

He was a Minister of State level member of the Vijay Rupani cabinet and after the 2017 Assembly elections, he was not given a cabinet berth by the BJP, the party instead elevated him to the post of the speaker. Trivedi also stood as counsel for several accused in the Gulbarg Society case trial, which was conducted at a special court.

The Congress has been alleging that Trivedi has not been acting in a non-partisan manner while conducting proceedings of the Gujarat Vidhan Sabha. The party had also moved a motion of no confidence against the speaker, but the motion was not put to vote in the recently concluded budget session of the Gujarat Assembly.

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| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
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