New Delhi: Union minister Anurag Thakur, who has been under opposition fire over his alleged hate speech during Delhi Assembly polls, on Sunday said strict action should be taken against those involved in the communal riots in the national capital in which 43 people have lost their lives so far. He also accused journalists about lying over his alleged hate speech in the run-up to the Delhi elections.
“Strict action should be taken against those involved in the (Delhi) riots. The strength of our country is that people of various faiths coexist and live unitedly contributing towards nation building,” he said.
When reporters asked him about the incendiary slogan – “desh ke gaddaron ko...” he raised at a rally in Delhi, the Minister of State for Finance said, “You are lying. You people should first enhance your knowledge. Half-knowledge is dangerous. The matter is sub judice, so I am not commenting further.”
At an election rally in Rithala, Thakur was caught on camera saying "desh ke gaddaron ko (the nation's traitors)", to which the crowd responded by chanting: "...goli maaro s****n ko (shoot them)".
Thakur on Sunday was addressing a press conference here after meeting stakeholders from various trades and industries during an interactive session organised by the Income Tax department.
At the press conference, he was asked to comment on the alleged hate speeches made by him and other BJP leaders in the run-up to the Delhi elections and how such vitriolic speeches led to the riots in the city. “The police is doing its job,” he said.
Asked again about his alleged hate speech, Thakur said, “I think sometimes there is lack of information in the media too regarding the way some things are projected.”
Evading further response on the issue, the Union minister chose to talk about the country's economy.
“India should move forward. We have taken big steps on the economy and will do so in future too,” he said.