Tuesday May 28, 2024

Indian minister's remark of 'taking back Sindhu' manifests BJP's expansionist mindset: FO

Foreign Office spokesperson warns Indian leaders against nurturing "hegemonic and expansionist ambitions"

By Web Desk
October 09, 2023
Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Yogi Adityanath. — AFP
Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Yogi Adityanath. — AFP

The Foreign Office on Monday strongly condemned the Indian minister's remarks on recouping the region around the Indus River in southern Pakistan, Sindhu.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath made the vicious remark that Pakistan's Indus region can be reclaimed just like the place of Lord Rama's birthplace was "taken back" in the demolition of Muslims' ancient Babri Mosque.

"If Ram Janmabhoomi can be taken back after 500 years then there is no reason why Sindhu can’t taken back,” Yogi said while addressing a National Sindhi Convention organised by the Sindhi Council of India.

"These remarks manifest a revisionist and expansionist mindset that seeks to subjugate the identity and culture of not only India’s neighbouring countries but also its own religious minorities. They also reflect a perverse view of history," Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Mumtaz Zahra Baloch said.

She said that Pakistan condemns the highly irresponsible remarks made by the UP CM, who is a key member of India’s ruling dispensation and a follower of the bigoted Hindutva ideology.

The FO spox further stated that it is equally condemnable that the so-called reclamation of the "Ram Janmabhoomi" has been cited by the Indian minister as a template for reclaiming the region that constitutes part of Pakistan.

History bears witness that a Hindu supremacist mob had brazenly demolished the historic Babri Mosque on 6 December 1992 to take back the claimed birthplace of Lord Rama in Ayodhya, Baloch said.

She said that the chief minister’s provocative remarks are clearly inspired by the gratuitous assertion of "Akhand Bharat" (undivided India).

"It is a matter of grave concern that such ideas are being increasingly peddled by individuals belonging to the BJP-RSS [Bharatiya Janata Party-Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh] combine to further their divisive and parochial political agenda," she added.

The FO spokesperson then warned the Indian leaders against nurturing "hegemonic and expansionist ambitions", urging them to resolve disputes with neighbouring countries and work with them to build a peaceful and prosperous South Asia.

Born Ajay Singh Bisht, Adityanath is a monk known for his incendiary anti-Muslim rhetoric.

He has stirred controversy since his surprise appointment in 2017 as chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, a state in northern India home to over 200 million people, riding roughshod over Muslims who make up one-fifth of the state's population.

“He is brazenly open about his Hindu politics and ideology ... He has projected himself as a Hindu leader and that's what brings him crowds and votes,” a journalist and political commentator Sunita Aron told AFP about the hardline protege of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“When he does Muslim-bashing, he grabs eyeballs and audiences,” she added.