Constitution made this country secular: Owaisi

Monday, 4 February 2019

Owasi said that we can disagree with each other’s views but to protect this democracy, it is imperative to strike a dialogue with each other.

PUNE: Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) President Asaduddin Owaisi on Sunday said India is secular because of its Constitution. He rejected the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) leader’s statement that India is secular because of Hindus and Hindutva.

He was speaking at a session of ‘Words Count - The festival of Words’ on the topic ‘Demise of Secularism - The future of Secularism’ on Sunday.

RSS Sah Sarkaryavah Krishna Gopal had said in Lucknow that the word ‘secular’ mentioned in India’s Constitution was drawn from the deep-rooted philosophy of Hindutva. 

Owaisi said, “Your faith is better than my faith or any one religion is better than the other -    this would not work. We have to believe in the Constitution and create a religion-neutral state.”

Citing the issue of Sabarimala temple entry for women under 50 years of age, he said, “When it comes to criminalising Triple Talaq it was a matter of gender justice but opposing the Sabarimala verdict was a matter of faith. Such hypocrisy should not be practised by state or central governments.”

He said his party’s oath is to protect the Constitution and as an Indian Muslim he has never believed or identified with the idea of creating an Islamic state. “My struggle is for the Constitutional rights for minorities,” he said.

Owaisi, when asked about his opinion on the uniform civil code, said, “India is a country that has diverse population. It is a country that celebrates multi-culture nature and that is why bringing uniform civil code would not be justified.” 

He said India’s judiciary is overburdened with cases. He quoted statistics that for every 1 million Indians there are only 10 judges. Five thousand more courts are needed to address the pendency of over 2 crore cases, he said.

When asked for his views on the attempt to create a Muslim and Dalit alliance, he said, “It is important for minorities to come together. It is unfortunate that most of the dalit, adivasi and Muslim representation is in jail rather than in the Parliament or at the national level.”  He said there are only 22 MPs representing Muslims and none of them are from the ruling party.

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