After Controversy Over Beef Remarks, Minister Kiren Rijiju Says 'I Was Misquoted'

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After Controversy Over Beef Remarks, Minister Kiren Rijiju Says 'I Was Misquoted'

File Photo: Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju


Aizawl:  Union Minister Kiren Rijiju today said he had been "misquoted" on his reaction to union minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi's comments that those who want to eat beef "can go to Pakistan."

Mr Rijiju had been quoted by a newspaper as saying on Tuesday: "I eat beef, I'm from Arunachal Pradesh, can somebody stop me? So let us not be touchy about somebody's practices."

The Minister of State for Home had now clarified. "I was misquoted. When the civil societies and press asked me if they have to go to Pakistan for beef consumption, I said India is a secular country and food habits cannot be stopped but the Hindu faith and sentiment must be respected in Hindu majority states, same as other communities have rights in their own dominant states," he said.

Last week, Mr Naqvi, the Minister of State for Minority Affairs, had defended the ban on cow slaughter and beef in two BJP-ruled states, Maharashtra and Haryana, in words that many found controversial.

"It is not about loss or profit... it is an issue of faith and belief. It is a sensitive issue for the Hindus. Those who can't do without beef can go to Pakistan or Arab countries or any other part of world where it is available," Mr Naqvi was reported as saying at a conclave organized by a private TV channel.

Mr Rijiju had been asked to respond to those comments by reporters in Mizoram capital Aizawl.

In his clarification, he said: "In India there is a new fashion where a balanced view is disregarded and anybody who speaks against Hindus is treated as secular. The PM has a vision for 1.2 billion Indians and let us not be divided on communal lines."


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