- Babita Phogat defended her controversial remarks against Tablighi Jamaat
- She said she was getting threats on social media after her tweets
- #SuspendBabitaPhogat trended on Twitter as users criticised her remarks
Champion wrestler and BJP leader Babita Phogat has defended her controversial remarks on social media against the Islamic sect - Tablighi Jamaat - that held a congregation in Delhi last month setting off India's biggest cluster of coronavirus cases. "I stand by my tweets, I wrote nothing wrong," the Commonwealth Gold-medalist told news agency ANI.
The 30-year-old wrestler-turned politician claimed that she was getting threats after she had posted a series of tweets on the Islamic sect. "Over the past few days, I posted a few tweets (on Tablighi Jamaat). After that, I started getting threats on my social media handles. I would like to say that I am no Zaira Wasim. I would not get threatened.... I have always fought for my country. I stand by my tweets.... I wrote nothing wrong," Ms Phogat said.
National Award-winning actor Zaira Wasim had played the role of Babita's sister - Geeta - in "Dangal", the biopic based on the life of Phogat sisters and their father Mahavir Singh Phogat, also a wrestler. Last year, she had announced her exit from Bollywood that triggered a huge debate.
Babita Phogat sparked a controversy after she linked coronavirus pandemic, which has infected over 13,000 in India and killed more than 400, to the Islamic sect with a controversial hashtag on Twitter in a recent post.
#SuspendBabitaPhogat trended on the microblogging site this morning as many users criticised her remarks. Some of her supporters, however, countered the trend with the hashtag- "#ISupportBabitaPhogat".
Ms Phogat, who had joined the BJP last year and contested the national election from Haryana, also backed Kangana Ranaut's sister - Rangoli Chandel - after her Twitter account was blocked over a post on the Islamic sect.
The Tablighi is one of the world's biggest Sunni Muslim proselytising organisations with followers in more than 80 countries. At least 9,000 people participated in the Nizamuddin event in Delhi last month. Later, many of the attendees travelled to various parts of the country.
More than 25,500 Tablighi members and their contacts have been quarantined in the country after the centre and the state governments conducted a massive operation to trace them.
Several states including Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu have appealed that the incident should not communalised.
Yesterday, the Enforcement Directorate had charged Maulana Saad Kandhalvi, the chief of the Islamic group in a money laundering case.