The government, defending Union Minister V K Singh, on 7 December, dismissed the allegation made by the opposition that he had made anti-Dalit remarks and said it was unfortunate that the Congress was hell bent on giving the entire issue a political colour.
Speaking to newsmen outside Parliament after Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi led Congress MPs seeking Singh’s ouster, Union minister Rajiv Pratap Rudy said, Singh was being unnecessarily traumatised for a statement that he has not made at all.
“Remove VK Singh from Union cabinet,” protested the Congress leaders as they shouted from next to the statue of Mahatma Gandhi outside Parliament. This was shortly before both Houses of Parliament met for another week in the ongoing winter session.
“Someone who speaks against Dalits has no right to serve as a minister. It is high time that Prime Minister Narendra Modi removed him,” Congress Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said.
“It is like this Rahul Gandhi wakes up all of sudden and starts some hidden programme of his own. Singh has not made any anti-Dalit statement,” he said. Rudy said Singh truly respects the Constitution of India and that he had not said anything what was being attributed to him by the Congress.
“Gandhi wants to give the issue a political colour. It is unfortunate a statement not made by someone is attributed to a Union minister. This is unethical and not correct,” said Rudy.
The Congress stated that it would continue to boycott Singh in Parliament. If Singh comes to the House, we will protest against it. Our demand is that action should be taken against Singh for his remarks, said a Congress leader.
It may be noted that Union minister of state for external affairs Singh had kicked up a storm in October with his comments in response to criticism for the Faridabad Dalit burning incident that the Centre cannot be blamed if somebody throws a stone at a dog.