Burning of Dalit kids: VK Singh draws flak for ‘dog’ remark
Minister VK Singh on Thursday kicked up a huge political row when he tried to
shield the government from blame in the Faridabad Dalit burning incident,
saying the 'government cannot be held responsible if somebody stones a dog'.
The dog analogy
provoked demands for his ouster by the Opposition, which sought registration of
a criminal case against him under the Scheduled Castes Prevention of Atrocities
Act, and drew parallels with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'puppy' remark made
with reference to Gujarat riots which was construed as directed against the
“See, the thing is,
never associate local incidents with the Central government (sarkar). There is
an inquiry going on. There was a dispute between families. The dispute...how
did it turn out...where did the administration fail, after these it come to the
“For everything...like if
somebody throws a stone at a dog, then the government is responsible...it is
not like that," Singh said in Ghaziabad, the constituency he represents in
Parliament, while referring to the burning alive of a Dalit family allegedly by
upper caste Rajputs in Haryana's Faridabad which left two toddlers dead on the
intervening night of October 19-20.
Senior Congress leader
Manish Tewari described the dog analogy used by Singh as 'preposterous and abominable'.
“....comparing the death of two little children who were burnt alive to
possibly the stoning of a dog...what could be more preposterous and abominable
than that. This reflects the mindset of the government.
“To recall the Prime
Minister of India made a similar analogy about two years back in an interview
to Reuters when he said that if a pup gets crushed under the wheels of a car
that needs to be empathised (correct) empathised too. That remark was in the
context of the Gujarat pogrom," he said.
Later, in a statement,
Singh described as 'dastardly and cowardly act' the killing of two little
children in Faridabad "which is a shocking reflection on the state of our
“From all indications,
the horrific incident was triggered off by a feud between two families. Our
society is made up of many individuals, and the act of every sick mind cannot
be put at the door of the government, regardless of which party is in power.
"It does not
matter who or what the political affiliations are, the perpetrators have to be
dealt with without mercy. I also appeal to the media not to deliberately twist
my words out of context. What I have said and continue to say is very clear,
and there is no ambiguity about it," he said.
CPM politburo member
Brinda Karat described Singh's remarks as 'arrogance of casteism' and demanded
registration of a criminal case against him, while raking up Modi's 'puppy'
remark made when he was Gujarat Chief Minister.
“His statement is a
clear casteist statement and it comes under the provisions of the prevention of
crime against SC Act. Therefore, this gentleman has to be booked under the Act
for casteism and casteist comments.
“Secondly, how can such
a man remain in the Central Cabinet. Of course, we all know that Modiji at one
time had talked about puppies in relation to a particular community. But at
least now that he is Prime Minister, hopefully he will get over his own
prejudices and take action against this person," she said.
insisted a controversy has been created out of 'unconnected sentences’. "I
have given an analogy by seeing an animal in front of me out there in that
village (where he had gone for an event in Ghaziabad). Which is what happened.
I have not said anything about those people (the victims of burning incident).
"All I said was
suppose somebody wants to hit a dog and everybody starts saying in the media
that this is what the government is doing....Now how it relates to that I
cannot understand," he said.
attack from the Opposition, he also tweeted: "My statement wasn't intended
2draw an analogy. My men & I put our lives on the line 4the nation
irrespective of caste, creed & religion." (sic)
"As citizens of
this gr8 nation v r sensitive but also responsible. Agenda of India is bigger
than any single neighborhood or individual (sic)," he said in another
However, an unsparing
Congress chief spokesman Randeep Surjewala said, "It is condemnable, it is
shocking, it is inhumane to say the least.
“General VK Singh has
insulted not only the entire Dalit community of this country but all Indians.
It reflects the mindset of the Modi government which insults Dalits, which
insults the minorities and looks down upon the people who are poor and
He demanded that Prime
Minister Narendra Modi sack him and tender an apology on Singh's behalf.
Surjewala said a criminal case should be registered against the minister under
Prevention of Atrocities on Schedule Castes Act.
Delhi Chief Minister
Arvind Kejriwal called Singh's statement as 'shameful' and that it was
prosecutable under SC/ST Act. "A case should be registered against him
immediately," he added.
Swaraj Abhiyan leader
Yogendra Yadav termed Singh's remarks as 'absolutely shocking', particularly as
it came from a person coming from Haryana and 'belonging to a community whose
members are allegedly involved in the crime'.
"The dog remark
crosses all limits. He should resign forthwith or be dismissed," he said. RJD
spokesman Manoj Jha said," This is a sad day...using a kind of disgusting
simile of dog...stoning of dog about that burning alive.
"Where are we
taking our country. Where is the rule of law. I mean, he is a cabinet
minister...Prime Minister speaks about moratorium...I think there should be a
moratorium on people like VK Singh. They are taking India to barbaric medieval
ages," he said.
BJP MP Udit Raj said, “VK
Singh has issued an official statement. But if he has made the remarks in the
context of what happened at Sanped village, I disagree with him.” (With inputs