As India continues to receive backlash from Muslim countries over the anti-Islam remarks by two Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) officials, Rahul Gandhi, leader of India’s main opposition party, hit out at the ruling party for its “shameful bigotry”.
Earlier, a BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma made insulting comments about the Holy Prophet and his wife Ayesha in a TV debate. Another party leader, Naveen Kumar Jindal, also made disrespectful remarks about the Prophet (PBUH) on Twitter.
However, the Indian government did not take any action against the ruling BJP. In fact, BJP only suspended and expelled its officials after facing an international backlash. Domestic protests against the blasphemy had already begun a week ago in India but had no impact.
“Divided internally, India becomes weak externally,” Rahul Gandhi said in a Twitter post. He went on to say that the BJP’s shameful bigotry had not only isolated India but also damaged its standing globally.
Divided internally, India becomes weak externally.
BJP’s shameful bigotry has not only isolated us, but also damaged India’s standing globally.
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) June 6, 2022
Muslim World condemns India
The BJPP officials’ remarks on the Prophet has resulted in a wave of condemnation in India and from the Islamic world. The Gulf States protested against the remarks and demanded an apology.
Top Indian officials remained engaged in managing the diplomatic fallout as more Muslim nations, including Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Oman, UAE, Maldives, Jordan, Afghanistan, and Iran demanded an apology from the government in Delhi for allowing the derogatory remarks.
Qatar had asked the Indian government “to publicly apologize to all Muslims around the world”. Other countries too sought an apology. The Taliban, which now rules Afghanistan, also condemned Sharma’s comments, referring to her as a “fanatic.”
Following the derogatory remarks toward the Prophet, a Kuwaiti supermarket even removed all Indian products from its shelves.
As for Pakistan, President Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in their separate statements, as well as the official Foreign Office statement, urged the international community to take cognizance now and “severely reprimand India” for the hurtful comments of its ruling-party leaders.