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Parrikar’s statement derogatory, but not a big issue: Shahid Siddiqui

New Delhi, Aug. 14 (ANI): Former Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Shahid Siddiqui today said that Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar’s statement that Indians abroad are called ‘Hindu’ irrespective of which religion they follow is derogatory in nature, but is not a big issue.

“Manohar Parikkar is misinformed. Actually, Indian Muslims are called Hindi, not Hindu in the Gulf, but anyway, it’s not a big issue. We are not ashamed to be called as Hindu, Bharatiya or Hindustani,” said Siddiqui.

Lucknow Muslim Cleric Maulana Khalid Rasheed Firangi criticized Parrikar’s statement, saying making such statements before Independence Day sends out a wrong message to the people.

“India is a secular country and making such statements in an atmosphere where people are preparing for the celebrations of Independence Day is not good,” said Firangi.

“Political parties should think above politics and everyone who lives in this country is an Indian and it doesn’t matter to which religion he or she belongs,” he added.

Congress leader Manish Tewari said that Parrikar’s statement is an orchestrated attempt to assault India’s idea of secularism.

Yesterday, Parrikar had said that that Indians abroad are called ‘Hindu’ irrespective of which religion they follow in the Goa legislative assembly.

He also said that in the Gulf countries even the Muslims from India are called Hindu. (ANI)