Union Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Giriraj Singh stirred a controversy on Wednesday when he reportedly called the leading Islamic seminary Darul Uloom Deoband a ”temple of terrorism”.
Union Minister Giriraj Singh: I went to Brahmananda Saraswati’s gurukul, till this date no child from there became a terrorist. However, I don’t know whether Darul Uloom Deoband is a temple of education or a temple of terrorism. Both Hafiz Saeed & Baghdadi were from here. pic.twitter.com/qCE7vaUoLP
— ANI (@ANI) November 29, 2018
”Earlier, Deoband’s name was Deovrant. I do not know what it is about this place that it produces people similar to Baghdadi (Islamic State founder) and Hafiz Saeed (Mumbai terror nattack mastermind and JuD chief). This place is not a seat of learning. It is a hub of terrorism,” he said.
Singh made the remarks during his visit to Devikund to meet Seer Swami Brhmananand Saraswati at his ashram. He also visited a gurukul (Vedic school) in the town and said that the children, who received education at such institutions, never thought of violence and served the humanity after graduating from those great institutions.
Singh said that no student from the Gurukul in Deoband has ever become a terrorist but it is difficult to state whether Darul Uloom is an institution of education or terrorism. He claimed that terrorists like Hafiz Saeed and Baghdadi both are alumni of Darul Uloom.
He asked whether the Islamic school offers education about the betterment of human race or about the devastation of the race, because both its alumni Baghdadi and Saeed are killing humans.
The Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) Minister also appealed to the Muslims not to create obstacles in the construction of Ram temple. “I want to make an appeal to Muslims that these 100 crore Hindus are also their brothers. You erected three lakh mosques here and no one stopped you. But now don’t test Hindus’ patience. Lord Ram is my faith and his temple will be made in Ayodhya,” he added.
Singh’s remarks have drawn flak from the Muslim clerics. Deobandi Ulema Qari Sayyid Ishaq Gora condemned his statement and demanded an immediate apology. “The statement by Giriraj Singh is baseless and unfortunate. He should take back his comment and apologise not only to a particular community but to the whole nation. The way he has given the baseless statement shows his wrong thinking. If he believes that Madarsas are the hub of terrorism, then, I would like to suggest him to take admission to a Madrasa to see what kind of teaching the students get in this institution. We teach students love and respect for our nation,” Gora told ANI. Another cleric, Mufti Asad Kasami, challenged Singh to prove that Baghdadi and Hafiz Saeed used to be students of Darul Uloom Deoband.