All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) president Asaduddin Owaisi on Tuesday slammed Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat over his statement that lynching is a “western construct” and should not be used in the Indian context to defame the country.

The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief said “the victims were Indians” and alleged that Bhagwat was not saying to stop mob lynching.

“The victims were Indians. Who garlanded convicts? Who draped them in (tricolor)? We’ve a Godse loving BJP MP. There cant be a bigger defamation of India than ideology that killed Gandhi/Tabrez (Ansari). Bhagwat isn’t saying stop lynching, hes saying don’t call it that,” Owaisi tweeted.

Bhagwat also mentioned how the idea of ‘Hindu Rashtra’ is still very much the aim of the right-wing organisation.

To this Owaisi tweeted, “The idea of Hindu Rashtra is based on Hindu supremacy. It means subjugation of anyone who isn’t Hindu. Minorities will only be ‘allowed’ to live in India. According to the Constitution we’re India i.e Bharat. Hindu Rashtra is a flight of fantasy borne out of insecurities”

Addressing the RSS’s Vijayadashmi rally at Nagpur, Bhagwat said it was wrong to use the term lynching in the Indian context and words like lynching are alien to Bharat and belong elsewhere.

However cases of mob-lynching have been reported from various parts of the country. On June 17, a 23-year-old man, Tabrez Ansari in Jharkhand was lynched to death after he was accused of theft and forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram.’ Videos showing Ansari being beaten up while tied to a pole had gone viral. Last month police dropped murder charges against all the 13 accused in the mob lynching case of Ansari in Jharkhand’s Saraikela-Kharsawan district. The murder charge (Section 302 of the IPC) has been converted into culpable homicide not amounting to murder (Section 304 of the IPC), the official added.

According to Human Rights Watch, “Between May 2015 and December 2018, at least 44 people—36 of them Muslims—were killed across 12 Indian states.”

The New York based Human Rights organisation also said “Hate Crime Watch, a collaborative database by the Indian organization FactChecker, documented 254 reported incidents of crimes targeting religious minorities between January 2009 and October 2018, in which at least 91 persons were killed and 579 were injured. About 90 percent of these attacks were reported after BJP came to power in May 2014, and 66 percent occurred in BJP-run states. Muslims were victims in 62 percent of the cases and Christians in 14 percent.”