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HVK Archives: Muslim MLAs refuse to sing VANDE MATARAM

Muslim MLAs refuse to sing VANDE MATARAM - The Daily

Staff Report ()
August 8, 1998

Title : Muslim MLAs refuse to sing VANDE MATARAM
Author: Staff Report
Publication: The Daily
Date: August 8, 1998

The debate on the Srikrishna commission report turned communal in
the legislative assembly today as Muslim MLAs in the op, position
criticised the chief minister's remark over the singing of 'Vande
Mataram'.

In the seven-hour-long debate over the report. Joshi's statement
that, "Mumbai survived the 1992-93 communal riots because of Sena
Chief Bal Thackeray," led to an uproar in the house. As the
opposition raised slogans of 'Vande Mataram', Joshi said, "We'll
see who recites 'Vande Mataram' when the session concludes." This
irked Samajwadi Party members, including Sohail Lokhandwala and
Nawab Malik, who said Joshi had insulted them and demanded an
apology from him. Amidst uproar, Speaker Datta Nalawde adjourned
the House for 15 minutes.

When the House met again, leader of the opposition Madhukar
Pichad demanded an apology from Joshi for "hurting the feelings
of Lokhandwala and fellow members".

Lokhandwala said, "Muslims do recite 'Vande Mataram' because. it
symbolises idol worship." However. Joshi said, 'The refusal to
recite ande Mataram' vindicates our mead."

Earlier, Joshi reiterated that the Srikrishna Commission report
was ...anti-Hindu and communal". Ridiculing the opposition's
charges 'that Thackeray should be arrested Joshi said. "When in
power. the Congress did not dare to take action against him."

Stating that he had . not criticised Justice Srikrishna, Joshi
said. "The Constitution has granted me rights to criticise the
findings of .the commission after it has been submitted to the
government."


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