Patna: Union minister Giriraj Singh has stoked a fresh controversy by saying that most of the missionary school students eat beef in foreign countries because they are not being taught about Indian culture and traditions.
He also said that shlokas of Bhagavad Gita should be made compulsory in schools in order to teach students about the country’s traditional values.
“We have to save our culture and traditional values and for that Bhagavad Gita should be taught in schools. We hear about missionary school students qualifying in IIT exams and becoming engineers. But they start eating beef once they get a job in foreign countries,” Union minister Giriraj Singh said.
“Democracy in this country is only due to sanatan dharma which I follow strictly. I talk about teaching Bhagavad Gita and Hanuman Chalisa to children in schools only to save our culture and traditions. I have no hidden agenda but people often misunderstand me and think that I am a fundamentalist,” he added.
He gave these statements while addressing a gathering at an event in Begusarai, his Lok Sabha constituency.
His statement is likely to snowball into a controversy in a state like Bihar where the BJP’s alliance partners JD(U) and LJP have been uncomfortable with issues like these.
Sources said that there has been unease in the JD(U) after Union minister gave the statement on Thursday. Party leaders said that “the JD(U) believes in building infrastructure and doing work for the people but he keeps giving statements like these to remain in the headlines”.
The Opposition HAM and the RJD also criticised him for his controversial statement and termed it as “a communal stunt”.
This is not the first time when Giriraj Singh stoked a controversy with his statements. In September last year, he had created a flutter in the state politics by expressing desire to retire from active politics.
In a statement, he had said that he didn’t join politics to become MLA or MP but his motive was to remove Article 370 and 35A from Jammu and Kashmir.
“Since Article 370 and 35A have been removed at the beginning of the Narendra Modi’s second term, I feel that I should retire from politics. I have also been concerned about the population growth in the country but since an announcement regarding the issue has already been made I think my motive has now been fulfilled”.
Recently while criticising the Congress for opposing the Citizenship Amendment Act and National Register of Population, he said that the party wants to “divide the country” by spreading lies and confusion over the issue. He said that “If Rahul Gandhi has love for infiltrators, he can take them to Italy”.