Karnataka: BJP MLA Calls 102-Year-Old Freedom Fighter 'Fake', 'Pak Agent', Stirs Controversy
BJP legislators defended the MLA's comments and questioned the Congress and the freedom fighter for their comments against PM Modi.
The Karnataka Assembly was adjourned on Monday, March 2 after heated arguments between the government and opposition over the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party legislator, Basavaraj Yatnal calling the 102-year-old freedom fighter HS Doreswamy a 'Pakistan agent' and a 'fake freedom fighter'.
Doreswamy has been a prominent figure at protests against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and has been openly critical of BJP-led central government's policies.
The former chief minister of Karnataka, and Leader of Opposition Siddaramaiah, raised the issue in the assembly.
Working president of the state Congress unit Eshwar Khandre told NDTV, "BJP leaders, especially Basavaraj Yatnal, has made very derogatory remarks against freedom fighters of this country. He has called Shri HS Doreswamy, a Pakistani agent. This is anti-national. We in the Assembly have demanded that the government take immediate action, book a case against him, expel him from legislatorship and uphold the honour and dignity of the House."
Opposition parties assembled at centre of the House, demanding that they should be allowed to raise the matter and forcing repeated adjournments. But the BJP opposed Siddaramaiah's request to raise the issue, without any prior notice.
Basavaraj Yatnal's comments against Mr Doreswamy, calling him a "fake freedom fighter" and "Pakistani agent" have snowballed into a major a row amid the Karnataka Assembly's budget session which is expected to clear the state budget on Thursday.
Congress leaders have said Yatnal's comments are in violation of the constitution as by disrespecting a freedom fighter like Mr Doreswamy, he had disrespected the freedom movement, which is in "violation of our fundamental duties".
The BJP leader has made it clear that there was no question of withdrawing his statements against Doreswamy and even went on to call him a "mouthpiece" in favour of the Janata Dal Secular (JDS) and Congress.
Several BJP legislators have come out in defence of the Vijayapura city MLA, questioning the Congress and the freedom fighter for their alleged comments against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP icon VD Savarkar.