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    BJP not communal, gave vaccines to Muslims: Telangana BJP chief

    Hyderabad: Contrary to his previous stances and inflammatory statements, Telangana Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Bandi Sanjay on Tuesday rubbished claims of his party being a communal. The Lok Sabha member of Lok Sabha from Karimnagar justified his statement by saying that the BJP has constructed highways and given vaccines not just for Hindus but also for Muslims.

    Sanjay, during his ongoing ‘Praja Sangrama Yatra’ at Medak district on Tuesday, further accused All India Majilis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) president and Hyderabad Lok Sabha MP Asaduddin Owaisi of “controlling the Old City” area which he alleged the ruling TRS leaders are scared to visit. The BJP MP’s statement of his party not being communal however is evidently untrue, as his past speeches have directly targeted Muslims.

    Last year during the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) elections on November 24, Bandi Sanjay said that the BJP would conduct a “surgical strike” on the Old City to weed out illegal Rohingya Muslim refugees. His statement on the issue is considered to be loaded as the Old City is predominantly Muslim. It was censured from all sides, and Owaisi even questioned Sanjay as to whom the surgical strike was meant to be for in the Old City.

    Aside from that in August, Sanjay stated that he would “return” all properties of Hyderabad’s Nizams “to Hindus”. Both fly in the face of his statement made on Tuesday. He ended his speech by evoking Sanatana dharma and vowed to protect it. “I won’t work against any group but if Hinduism is attacked, I will defend it and protect the name of Ram,” Sanjay asserted during his Padayatra.

    He concluded his speech by paying homage to the martyrs of Telangana and vowed to honour them on Telangana ‘Liberation day’, on September 17. Union home minister Amit Shah is to be present alongside Sanjay to “commemorate” the event.

    Every year the BJP in Telangana, since the state was formed in 2014, has been demanding September 17 to be observed as ‘liberation day’. The term however is a malicious term aimed at painting the last Nizam of Hyderabad’s rule as continuation of ‘occupation’ of the erstwhile princely state. The date marks the day when Hyderabad, which comprised Telangana and parts of Maharashtra and Karnataka, was annexed to India through the military action called Operation Polo or Police Action in 1948, over a year after Indian independence.

    On Tuesday in Medak, Bandi Sanjay continued his usual tirade against the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) government, and accused chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao (KCR) of cheating people by not fulfilling promises of employment and the double housing scheme. Speaking at his Padayatra, the BJP state president remarked that KCR is “just giving out notifications” and has failed to deliver on his promises.

    Calling KCR a cheater, Sanjay remarked that despite the TRS government’s promises of doling out the Dalit Bandhu scheme, not a single Dalit individual has benefitted from the scheme so far. He also criticized the government for letting employees of the Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) suffer and censured the TRS for going back “on its promises” of delivering the Aasara pension schemes.

    The MP further alleged that neither TRS nor Congress did anything for the state of Telangana during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. “When Prime Minister Modi kept asking people to adhere to COVID-19 protocols, CM KCR was walking around without masks. He didn’t advise the public on proper COVID-19 measures either,” he added.

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