Indian wrestler Babita Phogat was criticised after she tweeted a video on Saturday defending her anti-muslim tweet, which she tweeted after the Tablighi Jamaat incident, and said that she won't bow down to threats.
"I stand by my tweets, I wrote nothing wrong," the Commonwealth Gold-medalist told news agency ANI. "I am no Zaira Wasim, I won't bow down to your threats," Phogat conveyed in a video posted to Twitter Friday for the people condemning her.
Soon Twitter was flooded with tweets asking to ban wrestler Babita Phogat with #SuspendBabitaPhogat trending. Some of her supporters, however, countered the trend with the hashtag- "#ISupportBabitaPhogat".
According to an NDTV report, the international medallist claimed she was receiving abusive and threatening phone calls and messages on the social media platform after she tweeted about the Tablighi Jamaat, that held a congregation in Delhi last month setting off India's biggest cluster of coronavirus cases.
"Over the past few days, I posted a few tweets (on Tablighi Jamaat). After that, I started getting threats on my social media handles. I would like to say that I am no Zaira Wasim. I would not get threatened. I have always fought for my country. I stand by my tweets. I wrote nothing wrong," Phogat said.
National award-winning Kashmiri actress Zaira Wasim had played the role of Babita's sister Geeta in "Dangal", the biopic based on the life of Phogat sisters and their father Mahavir Singh Phogat, also a wrestler. Zaira's premature, exit from Bollywood had triggered a huge debate, last year.
In a controversial tweet, on April 15, the Commonwealth gold medallist linked the COVID-19 pandemic, which has infected over 13,000 in India and killed more than 400, to the Islamic gathering. In a similar tweet, she said, "It might have spread through bats there, in India illiterate pigs are spreading the virus".
Phogat had joined the BJP last year and contested the national election from Haryana.
Phogat Supports Rangoli Chandel
The trend for suspending Phogat's Twitter account started a day after Twitter suspended Kangana Ranaut's sister Rangoli Chandel. Chandel had attracted many complaints after she advocated violence against Muslims and "secular media", accusing the community of attacking and killing doctors.
Chandel had advocated violence against Muslims and "secular media", and accused "mullas" of attacking and killing doctors. Phogat had tweeted in support of Chandel. Taking to Twitter Phogat extended her support for Chandel.
COVID-19 cases and communal hate are steadily rising. On WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and even television news channels, fanaticism is bubbling all over.
The country has seen a rise in Islamophobic tweets linked to the COVID-19 outbreak after the Tablighi Jamaat, an Islamic religious reform movement in Delhi's Nizamuddin locality, spawned clusters of COVID-19 cases across the country.
Police have since registered charges of manslaughter against the chief, Maulana Saad Kandhalvi of the organisation, saying that he ignored two notices to stop the event after India went into lockdown. On April 17, the Enforcement Directorate had charged Maulana Saad Kandhalvi, the chief of the Islamic group in a money laundering case.
The Tablighi Jamaat has, however, denied all wrongdoing. The government has called for an end to divisive tweets and posts and even taken action against some people.
Reportedly, at least 4,000 people assembled for the Nizamuddin event in Delhi last month. Following this, many of the attendees travelled to various parts of the country.
More than 25,500 Tablighi members and their contacts have been quarantined in the country after the centre and the state governments conducted a massive operation to trace them.
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