Army Chief General Bipin Rawat’s remarks about the rise of AIUDF, a Muslim-oriented political party in Assam, has sparked off a huge controversy with AIUDF chief Badruddin Ajmal deciding to meet President Ramnath Kobind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the matter. The Army, however, defended Rawat’s comment saying “there is nothing political or religious in his talk.”
Meanwhile, All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi reacted to army chief’s statement, saying that it wasn’t the job of an army chief to make political statements.
In a programme in Delhi on Wednesday, Army chief Rawat has referred to the “faster” growth of the Badruddin Ajmal-led AIUDF, in Assam.
He implied that an influx of illegal Muslim migrants into the area is what has led to the growth of this party and an increase in the “Muslim population” in several districts of the state.
“There is a party called AIUDF. If you look at it, they have grown in a faster time-frame than the BJP grew over the years,” Rawat said.
Rawat also said the influx of Muslim migrants in the northeast is part of a “proxy game” being executed by “our western neighbour (Pakistan)”, with support from across the “northern border (China)”, to keep the area disturbed.
Rawat added that it was no longer possible to change the population dynamics of Assam, with the Muslim majority increasing in eight districts from the earlier five. He said efforts should be made to “amalgamate” the people living in the region.
However, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitaraman denied commenting on the issue. “Someone has said something and somebody has reacted to it. Why should I react to it,” Sitharaman said in Lucknow.
AIMIM chief Owaisi raised the issue in social media to question Rawat’s statements.
“What, the Army Chief should not interfere in political matters it is not his work to comment on the rise of a political party, democracy and the Constitution allow it and Army will always work under an elected civilian leadership,” Owaisi tweeted.