The 17th state assembly of Bihar took off today and newly elected members were administered the oath of office. However, AIMIM MLA Akhtarul Iman triggered a controversy when he announced that he objects to the word ‘Hindustan’ written in his affidavit.
As per reports, the AIMIM MLA was to take his oath in Urdu. When he was handed over the affidavit, he objected to the word ‘Hindustan’ written on it. His objection took speaker Jitan Ram Manjhi by surprise who argued that it is common practice for members who take oath in Urdu to use the word ‘Hindustan’ for the name of our nation.
“I had raised no objections. I had simply made a point that whenever we read the Preamble of the Constitution, in whichever language, it mentions the word ‘Bharat’ and not ‘Hindustan’. In the light of this fact I felt that since we are taking oath in the name of the Constitution, it would be proper if use the same term for the name of our country,” Akhtarul Iman claimed.
His comments did not go down well with many other MLAs. BJP leader Pramod Kumar had rebuked the AIMIM leader by saying that those who have a problem with the word ‘Hindustan’, can go to Pakistan. It is important to note that AIMIM had won 5 seats in the Assembly elections of Bihar.
Oath is taken as per the Constitution which mentions ‘Bharat’ everywhere. I wanted to know whether it’s okay to say ‘Hindustan’ or shall I say ‘Bharat’ during oath-taking today. We’re lawmakers, we should place the Constitution above all: Akhtarul Iman, AIMIM MLA— ANI (@ANI) November 23, 2020
Iman reportedly further stated that in oaths taken in Hindi and Maithili language, the word ‘Bharat’ is used, but the name of the country becomes Hindustan when the oath is in Urdu. However, protem speaker Jitan Ram Manjhi finally allowed him to take his oath with the word Bharat.
The AIMIM has won 5 seats in the recently concluded Bihar elections, Kochadhamam, Baisi, Bahadurganj, Amour, and Jokihat. Akhtarul Iman is the MLA from Amour.
It is not the first time that an AIMIM leader has sparked controversy while taking the oath. While taking oath for the 17th Lok Sabha after the 2019 general elections, party chief Asaduddin Owaisi had ended his oath with ‘Allah Hu Akbar’. Moreover, the oath-taking ceremony for the 17th Lok Sabha had become a slogan-shouting spectacle with BJP and several opposition party leaders trying to outperform each other.
BJD’s Anubhav Mohanty had gone a step ahead and had included ‘Jai Naveen’ in his oath, hailing his party chief.