Union minister of state for home affairs, G Kishan Reddy said half of Bangladesh’s population will be in India if citizenship is promised to all its citizens, reports The Print.
Speaking at an event celebrating Santh Ravidas Jayanthi in Hyderabad Sunday, Reddy said, ‘Half of Bangladesh will be empty (vacant) if India offers citizenship to them (Bangladeshis). Half of Bangladeshis will come over to India if citizenship is promised (to them). Who will take responsibility? KCR? or Rahul Gandhi?’
He added that the opposition sought ‘citizenship for infiltrators’ and ‘the government of India is ready to review the CAA if it has one word against any one of its 130 crore citizens, but not for Pakistani or Bangladeshi Muslims’.
The BJP leader’s comments came under fire on social media with many accusing him of alienating a ‘good friend’. Others questioned the logic behind the statement since Bangladesh’s GDP forecast for this fiscal year is higher than India’s.
This is not the first time that Reddy has drawn ire over his comments.
In June last year, he sparked a controversy when he called Hyderabad a safe zone for terrorists. ‘Wherever in the county, a terrorist incident happens, its roots are in Hyderabad,’ he said.
The comment had led to sharp reactions from leaders across the board and home minister Amit Shah, reportedly, pulled up Reddy for his remarks.
The minister once again made headlines in September, after he reacted to AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi’s criticism of Amit Shah’s call for ‘One Nation, One Language’.
Owaisi had said not every Indian’s mother tongue is Hindi and Reddy, in response, tweeted, ‘Owaisi saab should stop his obsession with looking for religion in a debate on language’.
Born in a village in Telangana’s Rangareddy district, Kishan Reddy began his career in 1977 as an ordinary worker of the Janata Party. He joined the BJP, when it was formed, in 1980.
His rise in the party was gradual and in 2002 he was appointed the National President of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha, BJP’s youth wing.
Reddy forayed into electoral politics in 2004 and was elected as MLA of Himayatnagar in Hyderabad. He was the only BJP candidate to be elected in that year’s Andhra Pradesh assembly.
He was subsequently elected from Amberpet constituency in 2009 and 2014.
In 2010, he was chosen as undivided Andhra Pradesh’s BJP chief, succeeding party stalwart Bandaru Dattatreyaad.
His winning streak in elections ended in 2018 after his first-ever loss in assembly elections, which were held in newly-formed Telangana.
However, this did not dampen his prospects as he was elected as MP from Secunderabad in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
Want stories like this in your inbox?
Sign up to exclusive daily email
More Stories from South Asia