BJP leader mocks secularism, says ‘we are here to change Constitution’

New Delhi: Bharatiya Janata Party leader Anant Kumar Hegde has again gained controversy by mocking secularism on Sunday, saying that those who call themselves as secular have no identity of their parental blood.

The Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship was addressing a gathering at Brahmin Yuva Parishat programme in Koppal district, where he said that the Constitution of India will change in new future.

According to a report by The New Indian Express, he said: “When it comes to it (secular), they point to the Constitution. Yes, we agree, it is included in the Constitution. They even refer to Manu Smriti. They don’t realise that Smritis are the statutes of the respective eras. Today, we follow Ambedkar ‘smriti’. We respect the Constitution and it has changed over time, several times; and it will change in the future. We are here to change the Constitution.”

He mocked secularism and added, “Those claiming to be secular and progressive do not have an identity of their parents and their blood. One will get self-respect through such identity. I will be happy if someone identifies as Muslim, Christian, Brahmin, Lingayat or Hindu. But trouble will arise if they say they are secular.”

On his overtly contentious remarks, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said, the Union Minister had no respect for the Constitution. “I do not want to stoop to his level. We know our language and culture. He is a Union minister but spits venom,” Siddaramaiah was quoted as saying.

The Union Minister had earlier landed into a controversy after actor Prakash Raj tweeted a video of his alleged inflammatory speech, where Hegde was saying, “As long as there is Islam in the world, there will be terrorism. Until we uproot Islam, we can’t remove terrorism.”