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Gopal Rai condemns BJP for calling Sikh IPS officer 'Khalistani', demands apology

New Delhi: Delhi Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader, Gopal Rai on Wednesday strongly condemned BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari for the alleged humiliation of a Sikh IPS officer in West Bengal by labelling him a Khalistani.

He emphasised that no one should be insulted because of their caste, religion, area, or language.

Rai also criticized the BJP leaders for their apparent disregard for constitutional boundaries and demanded a public apology for their actions.
"The way BJP leaders humiliated an IPS officer on duty in West Bengal by calling him Khalistani is not acceptable. In the entire country, whoever believes in the unity of the country also believes that to strengthen this country, no one should be humiliated on caste, religion, region or linguistic ground...The way the BJP leader publicly humiliated him (IPS officer) shows how hate is rooted in them...They (BJP leaders) are issuing certificates to everyone and have crossed all the boundaries of the constitution... AAP condemns this act in strong words and we ask the BJP to issue a public apology," Delhi minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Gopal Rai said.

Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann also condemned Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Suvendu Adhikari for allegedly calling a Sikh IPS officer 'Khalistani ' and demanded the BJP party apologize to the Punjabis.
"It is highly condemnable for a BJP leader to call a Sikh IPS officer from Bengal a traitor. Perhaps the BJP does not know that the Punjabis have made the most sacrifices to liberate the country and to maintain its freedom till date. The BJP should apologize to the Punjabis," Bhagwant Mann said in a post in 'X'.

West Bengal police on Tuesday claimed that BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari hurled a 'Khalistani' slur at a Sikh police officer.
In a series of posts on 'X', the West Bengal Police expressed outrage and labelled the comment by BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari as malicious, racial, communally inciting and a criminal act.
The police condemned the unprovoked, unacceptable attack on an individual's religious identity and added that stern legal action is being initiated.

"We, the West Bengal Police fraternity, are outraged to share this video, where one of our own officers was called 'Khalistani' by the state's Leader of the Opposition. His 'fault': he is both a proud Sikh, and a capable police officer who was trying to enforce the law...This comment is as much malicious and racial as it is communally inciting. It is a criminal act. We unequivocally condemn the unprovoked, unacceptable attack on an individual's religious identity and beliefs aimed to incite people to take to violence and break the law... Stern legal action is being initiated," the police said in a series of posts on 'X'.

Responding to the allegation Suvendu Adhikari has challenged the ADG (South Bengal) to prove his charge that a slur was hurled at a Sikh police officer, within 24 hours or face consequences.
"BJP LoP Suvendu Adhikari dares ADG (South Bengal) to prove his charge that a slur was hurled at a Sikh police officer, within 24 hours or face consequences. WB Police, Mamata Banerjee's only line of defence, is crumbling. They should now retreat to their barracks," said BJP's IT cell chief Amit Malviya in a post on X.
Meanwhile, this incident has elicited a strong reaction from West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who said that BJP's divisive politics has shamelessly overstepped constitutional boundaries.

"The BJP's divisive politics has shamelessly overstepped constitutional boundaries. As per BJP every person wearing a TURBAN is a KHALISTANI. I VEHEMENTLY CONDEMN this audacious attempt to undermine the reputation of our SIKH BROTHERS & SISTERS, revered for their SACRIFICES and UNWAVERING DETERMINATION to our nation. We stand firm in protecting Bengal's social harmony and will take stern lawful measures to prevent any attempts to disrupt it," she said in a post on 'X'.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, too, strongly condemned the incident, saying that BJP's poison of hatred has blinded them so much that they can neither see a farmer, a jawan or respect an officer in khaki.
"The poison spread by the BJP's 'cultivation of hatred' has tainted our 'political marketplace.' People who have been blinded by this poison are neither able to see the farmers, nor the soldiers, nor the respect for khaki. The nation stands with IPS Jaspreet Singh," he said in a post on 'X'.

According to ADG (South Bengal) Supratim Sarkar, the incident took place when a police force was deployed to enforce Section 144 in Dhamakhali. The force was led by IPS Jaspeet Singh, SSP Intelligence Branch. Several MLAs, including West Bengal Opposition Leader Subhendu Adhikari, were present in Dhamakhali (and were on their way to Sandeshkhali). During an altercation with a police officer, Subhendu Adhikari referred to the officer as a Khalisthani.

"As you all know we had a police force to enforce section 144 in Dhamakhali this morning. It was headed by IPS Jaspeet Singh, SSP Intelligence Branch. There are several MLAs including West Bengal Opposition Leader Subhendu Adhikari in Dhamakhali. There was an altercation with the police officer during which Subhendu Adhikari called the police officer a Khalisthani, which is never befitting of a political leader. We strongly protest against it. We will take legal action against him for this serious comment," ADG Sarkar said.

The BJP leader, along with other BJP MLAs, were trying to enter Sandeshkhali village in West Bengal's North 24 Parganas district.
The Sandeshkhali area has been experiencing turmoil for more than a week, with women demonstrators demanding justice for alleged abuses perpetrated by TMC leader Sheikh Shahjahan and his associates. 

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