Updated April 30th, 2024 at 21:25 IST

'Jihadis Ke Saath, Jihaad Ki Baat': Is 'Secular' INDI Alliance Compromised?

While seeking votes for the INDI bloc candidate from Farrukhabad Lok Sabha seat, Maria Alam appealed for 'vote jihad'.

Reported by: Digital Desk
'Jihadis Ke Saath, Jihaad Ki Baat': Is 'Secular' INDI Compromised? | Image:Republic World

New Delhi: As India braces for the upcoming third phase of voting on May 7, political parties are ramping up their campaigns with fervour. With the stakes at an all-time high, parties are sparing no stone unturned to outshine their rivals and sway voters in their direction. Employing a multifaceted approach, they are deploying traditional methods like rallies and door-to-door canvassing alongside modern tactics such as social media blitzes and virtual rallies to connect with voters and convey their messages effectively.

However, in the wake of luring voters, controversy seems to be an inevitable companion. The latest figure to court controversy is Maria Alam of the Samajwadi Party. While seeking votes for the INDI bloc candidate from Farrukhabad Lok Sabha seat, Maria Alam appealed for 'vote jihad', terming it as necessary in the current situation for the minority community to drive away the BJP government.


What Salman Khurshid's Niece Said?

Alam, the niece of senior Congress leader Salman Khurshid, while addressing an election meeting on Monday in the presence of senior Congress leader and former external affairs minister Salman Khurshid, made an appeal for "vote jihad", saying "in the current situation, 'vote jihad' is necessary for the minority community".


"Together do vote jihad -- with intelligence, without being sentimental and with silence. As we can only do vote jihad to drive away this Sanghi government," Alam said while speaking in Kaimganj in support of INDIA bloc candidate Naval Kishore Shakya.  Stressing that it was time to join hands, she said otherwise this "Sanghi government will succeed in wiping out our existence"

"People say that Constitution and democracy are under threat. But I say that insaniyat (humanity) is under threat. Now there is an attack on 'insaniyat'. If you want to save the country, its beauty and 'ganga-jamuni' (composite) culture, then vote very intelligently without getting influenced by anyone," she stressed.


In the public meeting, Khurshid took part as the chief guest. The video of Alam's statement has also gone viral on social media. Check out her video.

How Salman Khurshid Reacted?

Asked to comment on the statement of his niece, Khurshid said generally he avoids using such words because its literal meaning is misinterpreted.


"Jihad means to fight against a situation. Her intention must have been to carry out vote jihad to protect the Constitution," he said.

On his candidature from the INDI bloc from the Farrukhabad seat, Khurshid said he was offered a Congress ticket from Aligarh from the Congress. But he politely declined clearly saying that "I am Salman Khurshid from Farrukhabad and I stay that only".


'First  Jihadis Ke Saath, Now They do Jihad ki Baat'

Reacting sharply to Alam's remark, BJP spokesperson, Shehzad Poonawala asked if the Election Commission would take action on this.   


“INDI Alliance says Elections need Vote (vote bank) Jihad. We consider elections to be a pious festival, they take it as Jihad, we request Janta support , and they seek Jihadi support, First  Jihadis ke saath (SP,Congress, RJD,etc) now they do Jihad ki baat, from Muslim league manifesto to Muslim league mindset & manifestation. Should ECI not act on this?” Poonawala wrote on X.   

Maria Alam Booked

Meanwhile, UP Police on Tuesday evening booked Congress leader Salman Khurshid and his niece Maria Alam over his controversial remarks. Taking cognisance of the remarks made by Maria Alam, a case was registered against her for violating the provisions of the IPC and Representation of People Act following a complaint made by the Flying Squad and Surveillance Team, police said, and added that a case was also registered against Khurshid, who was the chief guest at the election meeting in Kaimganj.

The SHO of Kaimganj police station, Ramautar said, "A case was registered against Maria Alam and Salman Khurshid on the basis of a complaint made by the Flying Squad and Surveillance Team.


"The case was registered under sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 295A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) of the IPC and section 125 (promoting enmity between classes in connection with election) of the Representation of People Act," he added.


Published April 30th, 2024 at 19:51 IST