Nupur Sharma: Why a section of BJP justifies action against Nupur Sharma, Naveen Jindal | India News

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NEW DELHI: While former BJP functionaries Nupur Sharma and Naveen Kumar Jindal have the support of a section of the party, another section justifies the action taken against them for their controversial remarks against Prophet Muhammad. This group believes that by penalising the two for their “out of turn outbursts”, the party has sought to convey the message that “development is its main mantra” and no one should cross the “Lakshman Rekha”.
GLOBAL PRABHAT spoke with several senior BJP leaders and many of them said on the condition of anonymity that the party took action against Sharma and Jindal to keep the focus of the NDA government on development issues.
A national spokesperson of the BJP said the party-led NDA government at the Centre was trying hard to keep its focus on the development agenda. “Development is the main mantra but several leaders seem to be crossing the Lakshman Rekha. Muslim netas say something and their BJP counterparts fall in the trap and get provoked. There is competitive communalism going on. One Muslim neta says something and we react to it in harsher words. In fact, all of us should speak only on development issues to avoid controversies,” he said.
He said RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat had also struck a conciliatory note. “For instance, Bhagwat ji said the ‘shivling’ found in the Gyanvapi mosque in Banaras involved issues of faith. But he also warned against looking for ‘shivling’ in every mosque?”
The spokesperson praised the BJP leadership for “drawing the line” for party leaders and workers. “This is a message for other political parties as well that the BJP does not believe in vitiating the atmosphere,” he said.
However, he attacked AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi and Muslim radicals for, what he said, “starting and encouraging competitive communalism”. “What Nupur Sharma said was due to constant provocation from Muslim speakers during a TV debate and her remarks were made in the heat of the moment. But Muslims do not have the right to threaten her and call for her murder,” he said.
A senior BJP functionary close to Union home minister Amit Shah too justified the suspension of Nupur Sharma and expulsion of Naveen Jindal from the party for “using derogatory remarks against Prophet Muhammad”. “Gareeb kalyan (welfare of the poor) is the BJP’s main plank. Knowingly or unknowingly, some BJP leaders say things which derail the party’s main focus on good governance,” he said.
The functionary said though cultural nationalism was the BJP’s commitment, it could not come at the cost of development and good governance. He said there were several provocations during the Uttar Pradesh assembly election held earlier this year but the BJP ensured that the focus remained on governance issues such as free ration, houses, self-employment, electricity, water, toilets, Ayushman Bharat (health) and the like. “While Ram Mandir in Ayodhya was an emotive issue, gareeb kalyan, sewa (service) and sushasan (good governance) remained the main plank,” he said.
A senior member of the BJP Mahila Morcha said the BJP-led government was conscious about its image and liked to be seen as following the Constitution in letter and spirit. “Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji has a neutral way of looking at things. The ministers and BJP functionaries should follow him,” she said.
“Sabka saath, sabka vikas is the BJP’s main principle. We respect each other’s religious beliefs. Even atheists get respect. The Nupur Sharma-Naveen Jindal episode is undesirable,” she further said.
“Nupur Sharma and Naveen Jindal may have garnered sympathy and support from one section of right-wingers but a section of BJP leaders has justified the action against them and said it was the need of the hour,” she added.

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