GUWAHATI: FIRs have been filed against Assam BJP MLA Shiladitya Dev for his controversial remark that the revered Assamese litterateur Syed Abdul Malik was an “intellectual jihadi”.
Condemning the statement, opposition Congress demanded actions against the Hojai MLA as per the provisions of law.
“Syed Abdul Malik is a recipient of the Padma Shri and the Padma Bhushan awards. He contributed immensely to Assamese literature and the greater Assamese society. By describing him as an intellectual jihadi, the BJP MLA demonstrated his nasty mentality in public,” Congress MLA and leader of the Opposition, Debabrata Saikia, said.
The party’s minority wing filed an FIR against Dev for allegedly fanning communal passions and trying to incite violence. Separate FIRs were also filed by organisations such as All Assam Goria-Moria-Deshi Jatiya Parishad (AAGMDJAP), All Assam Goria Yuva-Chatra Parishad and others.
The AAGMDJAP said the MLA should be arrested for “maligning and hurting” the image of Malik who was Assam’s one of the pioneering authors. He passed away in 2000.
The state’s highest literary body Assam Sahitya Sabha, of which Malik was a former president, and the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) also slammed Dev for the statement. The AASU, which on Sunday had burnt his effigies in protest, said the MLA was mentally sick and should be sent to a hospital. It demanded that the state’s BJP-led coalition government take action against him immediately.
On Saturday, Dev said Malik had once stepped up an ‘intellectual jihad’ with an aim to convert Assam into Bangladesh. As the statement triggered an outrage, he apologised but the various organisations are not amused. They want action against him.
Earlier, he had ruffled many a feather by making alleged controversial comments over the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and the National Register of Citizens (NRC).