Recently. the AIMIM MLA was seen chanting slogans at a Ganesh Chaturthi celebration in one of the pandals in Byculla, Mumbai. During his visit, he had said that Ganapati should remove the problem and all the obstacles from people’s life. He had prayed that Ganapati Bappa will give happiness to everyone, prosperity and success in life.
However, reports have now emerged that the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) MLA Waris Pathan has apologised for chanting “Ganapati Bappa Morya” at a pandal in Mumbai recently.
— News18 (@CNNnews18) September 25, 2018
Reportedly, Waris Pathan has now faced flak from his party AIMIM for visiting a Ganesh pandal and shouting religious slogans. In response to his party’s disapproval, it is reported that he has now apologised for his actions and assured the party that such incidents will never happen in the future.
“A few days ago, I said something at an event and I apologise for the same. It won’t be repeated in the future. I am a human being and they often make mistakes”, said Waris Pathan, leading many people on social media to question whether he puts his religion above his duties as a lawmaker.
Appalling that #WarisPathan has to apologize for saying #GanapatiBappaMorya. In a video message the AIMIM MLA begs forgiveness from god. He’s a lawmaker first, a Muslim later and in his official capacity he represents all communities, not just one religion!
— Arunoday Mukharji (@ArunodayM) September 25, 2018
Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the most important festivals, especially in Mumbai, as the celebrations often transcend religious barriers. Recently Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan had also faced criticism and was called ‘Unislamic’ after he shared a picture of his son praying to Lord Ganesha. Waris Pathan’s apology is being termed as the politicisation of a festival which was believed to be a cultural identity of the Mumbai city.
There have been many incidents in the past where celebrities have been slammed by fundamentalists. But a political party pressurising its MLA to apologise for a Hindu religious slogan is being termed as open religious intolerance by the party.
This is not the first time that Waris Pathan has issued controversial statements. Last year he had refused to sing National Song “Vande Mataram” and had said that he will not sing Vande Mataram even if “someone puts a revolver to his head”.