Known for his Islamophobic and misogynistic statements, Uttara Kannada MP Anantkumar Hegde has stirred up a controversy yet again.

Anantkumar Hegde makes another Islamophobic comment against Rahul GandhiRepresentation Photo
news Controversy Monday, March 11, 2019 - 14:01

Known for his Islamophobic and misogynistic comments, Uttara Kannada MP Anantkumar Hegde has stirred up another controversy by making anti-Muslim comments against Rahul Gandhi, calling him a “paradesi (foreigner) born to a Muslim and a Christian.”

Speaking to voters in Uttara Kannada on Sunday, the Minister of State for Skill Development said, "Look at the pitiful situation they (Congress) have brought us to. The whole world is praising our soldiers for their courage and bravery and this man (referring to Rahul Gandhi) wants proof of the damage caused in the attack (the Balakot airstrike). How did the son of a Muslim become a Brahmin named Gandhi? This 'paradesi' (referring to Rahul Gandhi) was born to a Muslim and a Christian. How does he become a Brahmin? Can he provide DNA proof?"  

This is not the first time Anantkumar Hegde has ridiculed the Muslim community. He is known for his crass statements on women, religion and even the Constitution. However, he has never apologised for his remarks.

In January earlier this year, he had called Rahul Gandhi a "hybrid specimen" who was "born to a Muslim and a Christian".

"We can understand such issues but that empty-headed man (Rahul Gandhi) does not know or understand. You will not find such a hybrid specimen in any laboratory across the world. You'll find such a specimen in the Congress laboratory in this country where the father and son are of two different types. Look how they lie. How is the son of a Muslim father and a Christian mother supposed to be Brahmin," he had said.

The minister has also made unnecessary comments over the religion of Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee President Dinesh Gundu Rao's wife on multiple occasions, which earned him flak. "I shall definitely answer this guy Dinesh Gundu Rao's queries, before which could he please reveal himself as to who he is along with his achievements? I only know him as a guy who ran behind a Muslim lady," Anantkumar Hegde had said. His statement came as a response to Dinesh Gundu Rao's question as to what Anantkumar Hegde has contributed to the development of Karnataka.

In 2016, Hegde's speech against the Muslim community had created a huge controversy. "If there is opportunity in the media – write exactly this. Telecast exactly this. Islam is a bomb for world peace. There will be no peace in the world as long as Islam is there," he had said. He was also booked under section 295A (deliberate and malicious act to outrage religious feelings) at the Sirsi Police Station.

Anantkumar Hegde began his political career as an RSS cadre. An RSS member and later an ABVP activist, he rose in ranks of ABVP and later BJP, during the communal conflict in the North Karnataka after the demolition of Babri Masjid in 1992. Some of the first cases of rioting, unlawful assembly and promoting enmity among groups were lodged against him in 1993. Anantkumar Hegde has also been accused of gathering a mob and taking part in the riots in Bhatkal when the region was communally charged in 1993.

In 1994, he dodged prohibitory orders in Hubli and reached the disputed Idgah Maidan and raised the national flag with two RSS cadre on August 15. Idgah maidan is a disputed property between the Waqf Board and the RSS, who claim that the land belongs to Hindus. Violence broke out after the flag was raised and eight people lost their lives.

He was given a ticket to contest Parliamentary polls in 1996 from Uttara Kannada and broke into the Congress bastion by defeating Margaret Alva. He has five elections election from Uttara Kannada since then.

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