Union minister and BJP leader Giriraj Singh courted yet another controversy on Tuesday when he called for a ban on green flags, which he said “tend to create hatred in the society and gives one a feeling of being in Pakistan”.
Talking to media persons in Begusarai on Tuesday, Singh demanded that the Election Commission ban green flag, claiming it gave an impression of Muslim-related political or religious institutions. “These type of flags tend to create hatred in the society and gives one a feeling of being in Pakistan,” he said.
While the RJD and Congress were quick to hit back, NDA constituents dismissed his remarks as “personal”.
The RJD, which incidentally has a green flag, demanded a ban on Singh, who is contesting from Begusarai against RJD’s Tanveer Hassan and CPI’s Kanhaiya Kumar, besides others.
RJD national spokesman Manoj Jha said Giriraj spat venom whenever he spoke. “He should be named Vishraj (the venom king) Singh instead of Giriraj Singh,” said Jha, wondering how the national flag would look if green was removed from it.
Bihar Pradesh Congress Committee (BPCC) spokesman Harkhu Jha said Singh’s demand demonstrated his distorted mentality aimed at polarising voters on the basis of religion in his constituency. “He wanted to link religion with politics. The ECI must take note of it and act against him forthwith,” said the Congress leader.
JD(U) national spokesman KC Tyagi refused to comment.
However, JD(U)’s state spokesman Neeraj Kumar said his party was disassociating itself from his statement, which seemed to have been made in an individual capacity. “JD(U)’s flag is also predominantly green, which denotes environment and prosperity,” said Kumar.
LJP spokesman Arshad Ansari said his party would have definitely reacted had the remark come from Prime Minister Narendra Modi or BJP chief Amit Shah. LJP’s national flag also carried green colour, he said.
Chief electoral officer, Bihar, H R Srinivas, said he had not received any petition from Singh either in individual capacity or as the BJP candidate. “We will see if any such demand is formally made to the ECI,” said the Bihar poll panel chief.