'Communal Parties' Like ISIS: Mehbooba

Jammu: Amid a raging controversy over senior Congress leader Salman Khurshid's book, in which he compared Hindutva as propagated by some to radical jihadi groups such as the ISIS and the Boko Haram, PDP president Mehbooba Mufti on Saturday said there is nothing wrong in comparing political parties with groups killing people in the name of religion.

She accused the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of hijacking "Hindutva and Hinduism" and said Sanatan Dharma does not teach communalism.

Khurshid, in his book, wrote: "Sanatan Dharma and classical Hinduism known to sages and saints were being pushed aside by a robust version of Hindutva, by all standards a political version similar to the jihadist Islam of groups like ISIS and Boko Haram of recent years."

"The communal parties which want to make Hindu and Muslims fight each other and indulge in lynching in the name of religion. You can compare such parties with ISIS or any other like-minded group because both kill people in the name of religion," Mufti told reporters outside the People's Democratic Party (PDP) headquarters here.

Responding to a question on Khurshid's book, she said "Sanatan Dharma does not teach us communalism".

"RSS, Jan Sangh and BJP want to make people in the country fight each other in the name of religion. They have hijacked Hindutva and Hinduism," she said.

The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister referred to "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" (the world is one family) and said, "Sanatan Dharma teaches us that. What BJP and RSS are trying to teach us is neither Hindutva nor Hinduism."

Meanwhile, a group of Bajrang Dal activists, led by Rakesh Bajrangi, staged a demonstration against Khurshid outside the Press Club here, demanding a ban on his book and registration of a case against the former Union minister.

"Comparing Hindutva with terror groups is a sin committed by Khurshid. His book should be banned and an FIR lodged against him," Bajrangi said as his supporters burnt an effigy of the Congress leader.

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