India will become a 'Hindu Pakistan' if BJP comes to power in 2019: Shashi Tharoor

File picture of Shashi Tharoor. Photograph:( WION )

WION Web Team Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India Jul 12, 2018, 07.11 AM (IST)

The two-time Lok Sabha MP and senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Wednesday sparked a row after he said that if the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) comes to power in 2019, it will compromise with the Indian Constitution and create a Hindu Pakistan.

Addressing an event in Thiruvananthapuram, Mr Tharoor further stated that the BJP will write a new Constitution which will pave the way for a nation, much like Pakistan, where rights of minorities are not respected.

"If they (BJP) win a repeat in the Lok Sabha, our democratic constitution as we understand it, will not survive as they will have all the elements they need to tear apart the constitution of India and write a new one," he added.

"That new one will be the one which will enshrine principles of Hindu Rashtra, that will remove equality for minorities, that'll create a Hindu Pakistan and that isn't what Mahatma Gandhi, Nehru, Sardar Patel, Maulana Azad and great heroes of freedom struggle fought for," he added.

Tharoor's comments have triggered a controversy with the BJP demanding an apology from Congress President Rahul Gandhi over what Tharoor said.

Also read: Tharoor now gives us 'rodomontade', Twitter laps up the word

BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra also took to Twitter and said that the Congress doesn't lose any opportunity to demean India and defame Hindus.

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"Rahul Gandhi must apologise for what Shashi Tharoor has said. Congress was responsible for the creation of Pakistan because of its ambitions. Yet again it has gone ahead to demean India and defame Hindus of India," Patra said.

The Congress leader also said Prime Minister Narendra Modi is more interested in political campaigning than in running the country.

Tharoor's remark came after Modi launched a scathing attack at the Congress Party while addressing a farmers' rally in Punjab.

Earlier in the day, Modi alleged that Congress had betrayed the peasantry and used them as a vote bank to further the interests of "one particular family".