New Delhi: BJP leader Giriraj Singh, booked last month for his hate speech while campaigning for the national election, has stirred another controversy with a comment questioning why "all terrorists belong to one community."
Mr Singh said at a seminar on Tuesday, "Isn't it true that all people caught in terrorist activities belong to one community? I am not trying to blame any one particular community. Why are all so-called secular parties silent on this?"
Mr Singh, who contested the election as the BJP's candidate from Nawada in Bihar, faces an FIR for his remarks last month that "those who oppose Narendra Modi should go to Pakistan."
Three FIRs, or First Information Reports, were filed against him in Bihar, where he was a minister in the state government till Nitish Kumar snapped ties with the BJP last summer. He was granted bail in Patna after he surrendered in a court.
Nearly a month later, he has made similar remarks. "Pakistan is the hurdle in Narendra Modi's path of becoming PM, and there are some people in India who are Pro-Modi. Some are pro-terrorism and their political Mecca-Madina is Pakistan. These people should be in Pakistan, not India," he said.
The remarks have embarrassed the BJP at a time it is seen to be prepping for power after 10 years. Exit polls predict that the party, led by Mr Modi, its prime ministerial candidate, will post its best-ever showing when the national election results are announced on Friday.
Mr Modi has based his campaign on the promise of development and distanced himself from the pro-Hindu agenda associated with the RSS and all its affiliates, including the BJP. After Giriraj Singh's last controversial remark, Mr Modi had warned against "irresponsible statements." (No irresponsible statements please, says Modi)
Congress leader Rashid Alvi said, "The BJP wants to destroy the country. They always bring cast and religion."
Ali Anwar, a leader of the BJP's former ally Janata Dal United, remarked, "What Giriraj Singh has said is the ideology of BJP-RSS, it shows the poison."