Amarinder flays Khattar over namaaz remarks

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Chandigarh, May 7 (IANS) Taking strong exception to his Haryana counterpart Manohar Lal Khattar’s statement that ‘namaaz’ should only be offered in mosques and designated places, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Monday said that the BJP seemed to be trying to communalise the atmosphere in the country.

“India is a republic governed by a Constitution and neither Khattar, nor anyone else, had the right to dictate to the people on where they should or should not hold prayers,” Amarinder Singh told media here in response to questions regarding this matter.

Flaying Khattar for his controversial remarks on the issue, he said that “the BJP seemed to be out to polarise the society on religious lines to garner votes”.

Khattar had, on Sunday, said that law and order would be maintained in Haryana, especially Gurugram and added that Muslims should offer namaaz in mosques and designated places and not at public places as this could be objected to by people from other religions.

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Khattar heads the BJP government in Haryana since October 2014.

Asked to comment on the transfer of Kathua rape-murder case to Pathankot, on the directive of the Supreme Court, Amarinder Singh said his government would ensure full security for the victim’s family, lawyer and others during the trial proceedings.

“My government is committed to upholding the judicial process as per the apex court’s directives,” he added.

–IANS

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