NEW DELHI: Congress leader of House Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury on Monday hit out at the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the Lok Sabha describing its leaders as "fake Hindus" and accused the government of "trying to shut the voices of people through bullets."
Chowdhury's remarks came while showing his protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) which triggered widespread violent demonstrations across India since December 9, 2019 when the Bill related to the contentious Act was passed in the Lok Sabha during winter session.
Referring to Union minister Anurag Thakur's recent "shoot the traitors" statement while leading a crowd at a BJP rally which went viral on social media leading Election Commission to restrict him for a certain period from campaigning in Delhi ahead of the Legislative Assembly elections in the city on February 8, Chowdhury mentioned the government "cannot shut the voice of the people through bullets".
"People are staging protests to save the Constitution after the Citizenship Amendment Act came into force. Common people are being shot and killed by bullets. This government is trying to shut the voice of people through bullets. They cannot do that. They (BJP) are fake Hindus," Chowdhury said during Zero Hour demanding discussion over the issue and asking the government to reconsider CAA.
Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla interrupted in between and said that a late-night discussion on CAA was arranged in winter session. Meanwhile, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said Congress can raise the issue after the motion of thanks to President's address, "I am appealing to you through Speaker to let the House continue its proceedings."
Chowdhury was among other Congress MPs along with other lawmakers from Dravida Munetra Kazhagam (DMK) and Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) who started protest against the government to "roll back" CAA soon after the House assembled at 11 a.m. on Monday.
The lawmakers came near the Speaker's podium and began sloganeering "save our democracy", "save our Constitution", "save our India", "Prime Minister, reply", "stop inflammatory speeches" and "roll-back CAA" when Speaker Birla did not allow Congress floor leader to speak over the issue.
Amid pandemonium, Birla continued the Question Hour and Zero Hour. As the ruckus continued, the Speaker adjourned the House for lunch till 1.30 p.m. Earlier, Chowdhury, Kodikunnil Suresh and Gaurav Gogoi gave adjournment motion notice in the Lok Sabha to "reconsider" the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act which came into force on January 10 when the Ministry of Home Affairs made the announcement through a gazette notification -- almost a month after it was passed by Parliament on December 11, 2019.
CAA grants citizenship to migrants from six non-Muslim communities -- Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians -- who fled to India from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan till December 31, 2014.