Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Shazia Ilmi asks Muslims to be ‘Communal’ and vote for AAP

( News Bharati English)

Shazia IlmiNew Delhi, April 23: Just ahead of the crucial fifth phase of Lok Sabha elections, a video has surfaced wherein Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Shazia Ilmi is seen making appeal to Muslims to be Communal and Vote for AAP.
“Muslims ought to be communal this time. Kejriwal is our man. Muslims should think of the community and vote for him,” Shazia is seen saying in the video which is getting viral on the social media.
Interestingly, though AAP has made a meek attempt to distance itself from her remarks and senior party leader Manish Sisodiya has said, “She should not have said it”, Ilmi has shown no regret about it. She was seen defending her remarks by saying that she meant to make fun of ‘all this Secular-Communal terminology.’
"Muslims are very secular. Muslims ought to be more communal. (They) do not vote for their own. (AAP leader) Arvind Kejriwal is your own. I say, it is enough of secularism," Ilmi, who contested the Lok Sabha polls from Ghaziabad earlier in the month, is seen saying in the video.
"Here helping the Congress win, there someone else. Please do not be so secular. Muslims are secular. They will continue to vote for others. Other parties don't do such things?" she said.
It is a short 1.19 minute video clip where Ilmi is seen talking to Muslims. The video, believed to be shot in Mumbai, where she had gone for campaigning for AAP's South Mumbai candidate Mira Sanyal, shows Ilmi talking with her head covered with a dupatta. Mumbai goes to polls on April 24.

Ilmi, a member of AAP's national executive, is seen further saying, "agree, this is controversial, but this is important" in reaction to a person sitting next to her who said "we are afraid, we have to vote".
The clip ends with Ilmi saying, "Kaam badal dijiye … lado aur jito (change the work. Fight and win)."
Ilmi has said, while defending her comments, that, "Communal means 'of the community', not in a hateful manner. What I was telling them is not to be a political slave to a party. Not to live in fear."
"It was more of a sarcastic comment, play of words," she added.
While speaking to television channela, Ilmi has not denied the contents of the video. But, said she does not remember where she said it as she had attended several meetings.
"I haven't said anything wrong. Congress has done nothing for us all these years," she told the news channel.
She also said, "This is my interpretation of secular versus communal."
Manish Sisodia, AAP spokesperson, said: "It is wrong. She should not have said it. The party does not believe in this."
On its twitter account, Ms Ilmi's party clarified, "AAP does not believe in this kind of politics nor does it endorse it."
Ahead of the Delhi assembly elections in 2013, when Ilmi had contested for the MLA seat from RK Puram, her name was embroiled in an alleged sting operation showing her and several other AAP candidates asking for donation in lieu of favours.
In a video posted on YouTube, Shazia Ilmi, a top leader of Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), is seen urging Muslim leaders, "I'm saying Muslims are very secular. Muslims need to be communal. A Muslim isn't communal - doesn't vote for his own. Arvind Kejriwal is one of you. You are too ... don't be this secular. Look after your own homes (interests)."
In recent weeks, the national election has seen politicians using religion to court voters and making remarks designed to polarize votes, with the powerful Election Commission reacting swiftly. Azam Khan, a minister in Uttar Pradesh, has been banned from campaigning after a hate speech. BJP leader, Giriraj Singh, has been told today he cannot campaign in Bihar and Jharkhand for stating recently that critics of Narendra Modi will have to go to Pakistan after the BJP is elected.

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