Mangaluru, Aug 13, 2019 : Communist Party leader Kanhaiya Kumar’s response to a student from Mangaluru is going viral on social media after the girl questioned his views on the idea of ‘one nation’, chant of ‘Jai Shri Ram’ and the Ramayana, Yahoo reported.
Speaking in Mangaluru at the ‘Youth at Crossroads’ event during the centenary celebrations of CPI leader BV Kakkilaya, Kumar was confronted by a member among the audience.
The episode began with a girl greeting Kumar by saying “Jai Shri Ram” and demanded that Kumar should chant ‘Jai Hind’ ahead of the Independence Day.
“You said ‘Jai Shri Ram,’ but where I come from, we chant ‘Sita Ram’,” replied Kumar to a round of applause by the audience.
The woman then goes on to attack Kumar, precisely questioning his views on the idea of ‘one nation, one politics’.
“The nation is one, there is no doubt in that. But the Constitution that represents the country has more than 300 Articles. The Parliament that represents that ‘one nation’ also has two houses – the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha – and the members who are elected to these houses are as many as 545. So, the ‘oneness’ that we talk about has diversity in it ”, Kumar replied.
“You can say ‘Jai Shri Ram’ or ‘Jai Hanuman’ or whatever you feel like, you have the freedom to do so. And that freedom is given to you by the Constitution. So I would request you, to sometimes, also hail the Constitution as well, which gives you that freedom to speak,” he added.
“I hope you do a PhD some day. If you do a PhD some day, I would request you to do a PhD on the number of versions of Ramayana written in this country. I would like to tell you, that there are more than 300 written versions of the Ramayana in this country,” he added.
Explaining his stand on his love for the country, Kumar said, “Your country is yours, the same way your mother is yours. But loving one’s mother is your personal matter. But when you walk on the road and someone approaches you with a flag of some colour and some chants and asks you to prove your love for your mother, what would you answer? This country is ours, we love this country and for us, love is not an exhibit, we love from the bottom of our hearts.”