ANI Photo | Anyone can file FIR if religious sentiments hurt: UP dy CM after Udhayanidhi, Priyank Kharge booked

Hitting out at DMK leader Udhayanidhi Stalin and Karnataka minister Priyank Kharge, after an FIR was registered against them for “hurting religious sentiments” with their remarks against Sanatan Dharma, Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya on Wednesday said such statements have no place in the country.
Speaking to ANI on Wednesday, the UP deputy CM said, “Anyone can file an FIR if his religious sentiments are hurt. There is no place for such remarks in the country.”
UP minister and BJP leader Anil Rajbhar also demanded strict action against the DMK leader and the Congress minister.
“This country, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will not tolerate anyone harming Sanatan Dharma. I welcome the registration of an FIR against these leaders and demand that strict action be taken against them,” Rajbhar told ANI on Wednesday.
Amid the ongoing furore over Tamil Nadu minister Udhayanidhi’s remarks, equating Sanatan Dharma with “mosquitoes, dengue, malaria, fever and corona”, and an alleged statement by the Congress leader with similar overtones, an FIR was registered against them at Rampur in UP.
The FIR was registered under IPC sections 153A and 295A on a complaint lodged by some advocates.
Udhayanidhi’s rant against Sanatana Dharma ruffled many feathers, with seers as well as BJP leaders demanding that he take back his remarks and tender an apology.
However, the DMK leader clarified his statement to reporters, claiming he did not speak against Hinduism but practices such as caste-based discrimination.
Asked to cite illustrations of Sanatan practices that he was railing against, the DMK leader said not extending an invitation to President Droupoadi Murmu for the inauguration of the new Parliament building was one such example.
“Honourable President, Droupadi Murmu was not invited to the opening of the new Parliament. This is the best current example,” Udhayanidhi said.
He, however, evaded questions on whether he was willing to tender an apology over his remarks against Sanatan Dharma.
Addressing a seminar in Chennai earlier, Udhayanidhi said Sanatan Dharma shouldn’t be merely opposed but “eradicated”.
Priyank Kharge, son of Congress national president Mallikarjun Kharge and a minister in the Karnataka cabinet, said any religion that does not promote equality is as good as a disease.
“Any religion that does not promote equality or does not ensure that you have the dignity of being human is not a religion, according to me. Any religion that does not give equal rights or treat you like humans is as good as a disease,” Priyank Kharge said.
Later, reacting to this remark, BJP national secretary BL Santhosh posted on ‘X’, “So if there is an infection in somebody’s stomach, you chop off the head..??” (ANI)

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