Delhi Vidhan Sabha Speaker Ram Niwas Goel on Wednesday rejected opposition BJP’s demand of pulling out Tipu Sultan’s portrait from the assembly gallery, accusing the latter of unnecessarily creating controversy on the issue.
The Speaker said there is “no question” of removing it and warned of strong action if anyone tries to remove the portrait from the martyrs memorial gallery of the assembly. Goel said the picture of Tipu Sultan is also carried in the Constitution of India and there is no question of removing it.
“The Constitution of India also carries a picture of Tipu Sultan on the page number 144 of Chapter 16. So either the people, who had written the constitution, were wrong or are the people who are against it,” Goel said. He asked the BJP to first remove page number 144 from the Constitution of India and then he would think about removing the portrait of Tipu Sultan). He said, “They (BJP) talk like a two-faced snake.” It is to be noted page 144, chapter 16, of the copy of the Constitution bears the pictures of Rani Jhansi on one side and Tipu Sultan on the other.
On Republic Day, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had unveiled portraits of 70 eminent personalities, including that of Mysore ruler Tipu Sultan, at the Delhi Assembly. However, the BJP-Shiromani Akali Dal alliance’s Rajouri Gardens MLA Manjinder Singh Sirsa questioned the move terming the Tiger of Mysore a “tyrant”. Sirsa alleged Tipu Sultan converted Hindus and Christians into Islam. He also allegedly threatened to physically tear down the portrait of Tipu Sultan.
Goel said the General Purpose Committee (GPC) of the Assembly, headed by the Speaker, had taken a decision to install portraits of 70 individuals, comprising freedom fighters, revolutionaries and heroes of the country.
“All the portraits were put on display for two weeks before their formal unveiling. But the BJP did not raise the objection then,” he added.