“They have now decided to whitewash the mistake by holding these talks with seers and celebrating Shivaji Jayanti,” a Congress source said.

Is Karnataka government planning to drop Tipu Jayanti celebrations
news Tipu Jayanti Thursday, November 15, 2018 - 09:06

Every year since 2015, a controversy erupts in the run up to November 10 – Tipu Jayanti. Both the BJP and the Congress begin a blame game, which ends right after the celebrations. The issue is picked up once again the following year. However, this year, it looks like the issue will be taking a new turn. Congress veteran CM Ibrahim on Wednesday said that he was upset with the Tipu Jayanti celebrations in the state, since Islam is strictly against idol worship. And sources tell TNM that his statement is just the first step in the state government’s plan to eventually drop state-sponsored celebrations of Tipu Jayanti.

Speaking to the media in Vijayapura district on Wednesday, Ibrahim said, “I am upset by the way the Tipu Jayanti event was celebrated. Offering prayers to photos and organising processions is not practised in Islam, especially idol worship. We have to figure out how to organise this event properly without hurting anyone’s sentiments.”

The leader also said that in December this year, leaders from the Muslim community along with several Hindu seers including those from Sringeri and Suttur Mutts will hold talks and come to a conclusion on the issue. “We will discuss whether the event should be celebrated. If so, what is the procedure we should follow in order to avoid hurting religious sentiments,” CM Ibrahim said.

Ibrahim also added that leaders of the Muslim community would celebrate Shivaji Jayanti this year, “Shivaji was one of India’s most revered rulers. We will write to all Anjuman-e-Islam committees across the state to plan the Shivaji Jayanti celebrations and discuss how we should go about organising the event.”

The Congress leader’s statement came hours after Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy told the media that Tipu Jayanti celebrations would not be stopped. “I was unable to attend the programme due to ill health. We have no intention of stopping the celebration and will continue next year. There is no such agenda for stopping it,” CM Kumaraswamy said.

However, a Congress insider told TNM that there was unrest among the leaders of the Congress and JD(S) regarding Tipu Jayanti celebrations and that the coalition partners had not yet arrived at a compromise.

“The Siddaramaiah camp wants Tipu Jayanti to continue. However, there are many leaders, even in the Congress, who have realised that the issue will only backfire and the party will end up losing votes in the 2019 Lok Sabha election. JD(S) leaders are not keen on celebrating Tipu Jayanti. They have now decided to whitewash the mistake by holding these talks with seers and celebrating Shivaji Jayanti to showcase a picture of tolerance. This is soft Hindutva,” the Congress source said.

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