Mumbai: Tipu Sultan fought with the British, not for the country but to save his kingdom and converted Hindus to other religions at the tip of his sword, and also destroyed more than a thousand temples in South India.
A row erupted between political parties after the Samajwadi Party in Maharashtra proposed that the BMC name a garden in the Govandi area of Mumbai after Tipu Sultan.
While speaking to reporters, Govandi's Samajwadi Party corporator Rukhsana Siddiqui said, "I have put forward the proposal in front of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to name a garden in the Govandi area of Mumbai after Tipu Sultan."
Rukhsana Siddiqui, the corporator of the Govandi area and a Samajwadi Party leader said that Tipu Sultan is called the Lion of Mysore. He fought against the British for the country from a young age. "Is his fight for the country not valuable, questioned Siddiqui?" adding that some people link every issue with Hindus-Muslims for electoral politics.
Citing the rules, she said that he is the local corporator, and it is her right to name the garden being built in the area.
"Those who are opposing the name of Tipu Sultan do not understand the history. The name of Tipu Sultan will inspire the local people," she said.
Rukhsana said, "In the midst of this controversy, yesterday I got the notice of Mumbai Police that you are working to incite the riots. I had replied to police by saying that 80 percent of the people of Muslim community live in Govandi area, so I will name it for them."
Hours after this news, BJP and Hindu Janajagruti Samiti have opposed this move by the SP. Keeping in view the rising tensions, BMC postponed the decision of naming the garden citing that the beautification and repair work of the garden was not yet completed.
A team of Hindu Janajagruti Samiti protesting against the name Tipu Sultan met Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar.
After the meeting, Hindu Janajagruti Samiti spokesperson Dr. Uday Dhuri said that "We oppose renaming a garden of Mumbai after Tipu Sultan. Tipu Sultan has a history of oppressing the Hindus."
"Tipu Sultan fought with the British, not for the country but to save his kingdom. He converted Hindus to other religions at the tip of his sword. He destroyed more than a thousand temples in South India. I believe that BMC should not pass the proposal in the name of such a cruel Sultan. If this is passed, then other gardens will also be proposed to be named after tyrannical Mughal rulers like Akbar, Babur which can have further consequences," Dhuri said.
BJP MP Manoj Kotak also questioned Shiv Sena's Hindutva for naming a garden after Tipu Sultan and recalled the Ghatkopar-Mankhurd Link Road flyover naming incident. "Shiv Sena has supported this proposal to name a garden in Govandi area after Tipu Sultan. It seems that Shiv Sena has turned away from Hindutva. There is no relation between Shiv Sena and Hindutva. Shiv Sena's helplessness is clearly visible," said Kotak.
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