Hyderabad: BJP Suspends MLA T Raja Singh Over Comments On Islam

MLA T Raja Singh was arrested by Hyderabad Police earlier on Tuesday over his comments amid widespread protests.

BJP MLA from Telangana T Raja Singh

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday suspended its Telangana MLA T Raja Singh for his remarks on Islam and Prophet Muhammad. 

Earlier on Tuesday, Hyderabad Police arrested Singh after a case was lodged against him. Massive protests erupted against him on Monday night in Hyderabad following a video released by him which contained the alleged controversial remarks.

Along with the suspension, the BJP has issued a show-cause notice to Singh, asking to explain why he should not be expelled from the party.

A statement from Om Pathak, who is BJP's secretary of central disciplinary committee, said, "You have expressed views contrary to the Party's position on various matters, which is in clear violation of Rule XXV 10 (a) of constitution of the Bharatiya Janata Party. I have been directed to convey to you that pending further inquiry, you are suspended from the party and from your responsibilities/assignments if any, with immediate effect."

Singh is the third BJP functionary to face action over alleged anti-Muslim comments in recent months. Earlier, Nupur Sharma was suspended for her comments on Prophet Muhammad that had led to national as well as international outrage. Several countries issued public statements and summoned Indian diplomats to register their protests. Another functionary Naveen Kumar Jindal was also expelled for comments on Islam. 

Protest took place in front of city police commissioner CV Anand’s office and other parts of Hyderabad against Singh. The protesters demanded his immediate arrest, claiming that he had hurt the religious sentiments of the Muslim community. The protestors were taken into police custody at the commissioner's office in Basheer Bagh and were shifted to several police stations.

A section of protesters also called for the death of Singh, chanting "sar tan se juda" [a call to behead] slogans, according to a report. Such comments were condemned by AIMIM chief and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi.  

"Fight with us politically but not like this. If PM Modi and BJP don't support these comments then they should react. I also condemn the slogans (Sar Tan Se Juda) that were raised and will say to those people to not take law in their hands," ANI quoted Owaisi as saying. 

What did the BJP MLA say?

T Raja Singh on Monday released a video criticising stand-up comedian Munawar Faruqui, who recently performed in Hyderabad in which he allegedly made some comments about Islam.

Singh said Faruqui hurt the religious sentiments of Hindus and made remarks against the comedian and his mother. He also allegedly made derogatory remarks on the Prophet in the video.

(With PTI Inputs)