Bhopal: Shatrughan Sinha invokes Jinnah to shower praise on Congress

BHOPAL: Bollywood actor and MP c joined the league of leaders giving controversial statements across the country.  Sinha, who has come to Chhindwara on Friday night for campaigning in support of Chief Minister Kamal Nath and his son Nakul Nath, stirred a controversy by saying that Pakistan founder Mohammed Ali Jinnah was among the leaders of the Congress “family” who had the “biggest” role in India’s Independence and progress. Sinha, who joined the Congress recently, said this during a rally.  Sinha said Congress “family” belongs to leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Sardar Patel, Jinnah, Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, and Rahul Gandhi who played the “biggest and the most significant role” in India’s progress and Independence. “That is why I have come here (joined the Congress),” he said, adding that he will not leave the party.

Sinha’s remark evoked a sharp attack from the BJP.  BJP’s state co-incharge Satish Upadhyaya said that Sinha should clarify what he meant by including Jinnah in the Congress family.  BJP President Amit Shah raked up the issue while addressing a rally in Odisha’s Mayurbhanj Lok Sabha constituency and slammed Sinha for praising Jinnah.  Shatrughan Sinha has just gone to the Congress. Now he says that Jinnah was also a great man like Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Patel. The Congress leaders are praising Jinnah, who has divided the country. It is their character,” Shah said. Sinha made the remarks in presence of Kamal Nath, who despite sharing the same stage, said that he did not hear any such thing.

“I did not hear any such comment. If you are saying then he must have said it but I did not hear it… I must have been talking to other people at that time,” the Chief Minister said as the controversy erupted. Defending Sinha, Congress leader Anand Sharma, who was on Bhopal tour, said there was nothing in the issue and there was no need to flare it unwontedly.  Senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram, when asked about the issue at a press conference, said it was for Sinha to explain.

“Shatrughan Sinha, whatever his views are, he must explain. But a few days ago, he was part of the BJP… I don’t have to explain the statement of every member. I can only speak for party’s official position,” he said.  Sinha is contesting the Lok Sabha elections as a Congress candidate from the Patna Sahib constituency where he is pitted against Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. (With input from Agencies)

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