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Mani Shankar Aiyar visits Shaheen Bagh protest, stirs up new contrversy over “Qatil” remark

“I am ready for sacrifices. We will see whose hands are stronger, ours or that killer’s,” Aiyar said while addressing the agitation site

New Delhi: On Tuesday Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar dropped by Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh to express solidarity with those protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Act but ended up wading into yet another controversy with his “qaatil (killer)” comments in his address to the crowd.

“I am ready for sacrifices. We will see whose hands are stronger, ours or that killer’s,” Aiyar said while addressing the agitation site.

The former Rajya Sabha claimed that while the BJP government came to power with the promise of “Sabka Sath Sabka Vishwas (everybody’s progress)”, it was now bent on ensuring “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vinaash (everybody’s destruction)”. “The Modi government has brought out CAA and NRC to divert the public’s attention from the real issue, which is its failure to arrest the slowdown of the economy. But the brave women of Shaheen Bagh have told them that they can’t fool the people anymore,”.

Aiyar also appreciated the protesters for holding the demonstration without the support of any political party. “You have said that you don’t need any politician. You have been sitting here from the past thirty days, leaving home and hearth behind,” he added,  the central government has no right to demand documentary proof from genuine citizens of the nation.

Hundreds of women and children have been sitting on a road at Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh for a month now, defying the biting cold and political pressure to become the face of countrywide protests against the controversial citizenship law. However, the Delhi High Court has now directed the police to clear the area – cops have been asked to use “persuasion” instead of force, say sources – because it happens to block the crucial Shaheen Bagh-Kalindi Kunj road linking Noida with South Delhi.

The Shaheen Bagh agitation has even inspired a similar kind of demonstration at a park in Uttar Pradesh’s Prayagraj where thousands have been gathering for the last three days to protest against the CAA.

Amidst Gujarat assembly elections in 2017, Aiyar had stoked a major controversy by calling Prime Minister Narendra Modi a “neech aadmi” or vile person. Meanwhile, the Congress responded by distancing itself from the comments and taking disciplinary action against Aiyar, PM Narendra Modi termed it as an “insult to Gujarat” and asked people to “show their anger” by voting for the BJP.

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