On Saturday, speaking at a meeting in Kumta, North Kannada, BJP MP, Anant Kumar Hegde, said that numerous mosques in the state should be demolished, claiming they were built over Hindu temples.
Hegde mentioned mosques across Bhatkal, Uttar Kannada, and Mandya, alleging that they were constructed on violated Hindu religious sites.
He stated, “In every village of the state, there are small religious places which were violated. Until they are demolished, the Hindu community will not sit idly.”
Hegde said that his comments could be perceived as a “threat, ” but emphasized a call for revenge for the past 1,000 years, noting that his party has nothing to worry about.
“Let the newspapers write directly, some people find it a threat, we are doing this as a guarantee”. “If we do not take revenge for 1,000 years, then the Hindu community can clearly say that ours is not Hindu blood, “ he added, alleging that the demolition decision of Babri mosque was that of the Hindu community, not solely his.
Further, in his speech, Hegde directed his comments at Chief Minister Siddaramiah, referring to him as “Moorka” (Foolish) and accusing him of minority appeasement. In response, Siddaramaih questioned whether Hegde should be considered civilized, describing his statements as a reflection of his culture.
Hegde also targeted the deceased Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and Congress leader Sanjay Gandhi, alleging that their deaths were a result of a curse. During Indira Gandhi’s tenure as Prime Minister, a significant movement emerged regarding the ban on cow slaughter. Dozens of saints lost their lives in the movement, and many were murdered while cows were slaughtered in the presence of Indira Gandhi, with hundreds of cows shot dead. The revered ascetic Karpatri Maharaj had cursed Indira Gandhi, according to Hegde.
In an official statement, BJP MLA and former Deputy Chief Minister C N Ashwath Narayn immediately distanced the party from Hegde’s remarks, saying that the views expressed by the MP Anant Kumar Hegde do not align with the party’s official stance.
North Kannada Police have registered a suo-moto complaint against Hegde under IPC section 153 (promoting enmity between different groups) and 505 (statements generating public mischief).
Hegde has gained notoriety for a series of controversial remarks made in the past, including statements such as “advocating against a hand that touches a Hindu girl,” “challenging Congress President Rahul Gandhi’s Hindu identity,” and asserting that “BJP came to power to change the constitution.”
Despite these controversies, Hegde has consistently advanced in his political career, particularly in the lead-up to the Lok Sabha polls.