Indians voice concern over Shah’s appointment as new BJP chief
The Indian expatriate community in the Kingdom has expressed dismay over the appointment of Amit Shah as the chief of the country’s ruling party, saying his elevation as BJP’s president is in poor taste and not in favor of Indian democracy.
They said the government is promising “good days” and inclusive growth on the one hand while promoting and protecting a person with a criminal record on the other.
Shah, a close and controversial aide of Indian Premier Narendra Modi, has criminal charges against him, including allegedly ordering extra judicial killings carried out by police and running an extortion racket with them in Gujarat during his tenure as the state’s home minister.
Mohammed Qaiser, president of Tanzeem Hum Hindustani, a community organization based in the Kingdom, voiced concern over Shah’s elevation.
Qaiser said: “Shah is a highly controversial person. He was censured during the Lok Sabha elections for inflammatory speeches following the communal riots in Muzaffarnagar.
“It seems that he has been rewarded for delivering the crucial vote bank of Uttar Pradesh to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
Speaking on the issue, Obaidur Rahman, joint convenor of the Milli council Riyadh, said that Shah is being credited in the BJP for orchestrating its stellar performance in the Hindi heartland by polarizing votes in the Lok Sabha elections.
He said that Shah’s elevation is part of a larger game plan, as the saffron party gears up for assembly polls in four states — Maharashtra, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir and Jharkhand and wants to score on the same agenda of communal politics once again.
Mukhtar Khan, president of BISWAS, a socio-welfare group of the expatriate workers representing the north Indian states, also voiced concern on Shah’s appointment saying the former minister faces charges in the Sohrabuddin fake encounter case.
Shah resigned in 2010 after he was charged with the murder and kidnapping of Sohrabuddin Sheikh and was arrested in connection with the killing. He spent more than three months in jail.
Khan said that Shah has a controversial image due to many charges including diverting minority scholarships and schemes to other works in the state, which speaks volumes for his apathy toward Muslims.
Khan said that BJP should have appointed some moderate leader as its chief rather than a highly controversial hard-liner, adding that Shah will only further polarize Indian politics.