05/10/2020 10:43 AM IST | Updated 05/10/2020 10:57 AM IST

Indians In Europe Call For BJP MP Tejasvi Surya's Removal As Speaker At Hamburg Startup Conference

Their letter to the Indian Consulate in Hamburg highlights several communal tweets by Tejasvi and points to remarks he made during the anti-CAA protests.

Hindustan Times via Getty Images
Tejasvi Surya arrive in front of the Parliament of India in 2019. 

Indians in Europe are among various collectives calling for the removal of BJP MP Tejasvi Surya from the speaker list for an upcoming startup conference hosted by the Indian Consulate in Hamburg.

In a letter to the consulate, they wrote: “Tejaswi Surya clearly has a divisive agenda against the communities that are not “Hindu”. This agenda is in contravention of the European ethos of equality, diversity and inclusivity. It is also in contravention of the European responsibility under international Law, most notably, UDHR, ICRD, ICCPR, EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, Directive 2000/78/EC and COM(2008)462.”

The signatories include India Solidarity Germany, The Humanism Project, Solidarity Belgium, Indians Against CAA, NRC & NPR –Finland, Bharath Democracy Watch, Indian Alliance Paris, and Foundation TheLondon Story.

Their letter highlights several communal tweets and comments by Tejasvi and points to remarks he made during the anti-CAA protests.

“This person is famous for publicly stating that anyone who is against Modi is an anti-national. It’s shameful for a parliamentarian to even make such statements,” they said.

“At the height of the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protests, Surya addressed a pro rally at Bengaluru’s Town Hall, where he said it was the “uneducated, illiterate, and puncture-wallahs who were against the CAA,”” the letter said.

The signatories said that extremist views of such polarising figures “cannot be allowed to find a safe haven in Europe.”

They called on the European diaspora to raise objection with the Indian Consulate and ask the Consulate to instead invite speakers with diverse backgrounds and experiences.

Tejasvi, recently appointed the BJP Yuva Morcha chief, had made headlines last week for refusing to apologise for his “Bengaluru terror epicentre” comment which drew criticism from opposition parties.

The MP, who represents Bengaluru South Lok Sabha segment, had claimed that Bengaluru had become an epicentre of terror activities, and had requested Union Home Minister Amit Shah to set up a permanent division of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in the city.

US Election
The latest polls, breaking news and analysis on the 2020 US presidential election from HuffPost