In a recent interview to TV9, Raja Singh was questioned about BJP MP Chintamani Malviya’s statement, who, in reference to Padmavati, said that women in filmmakers’ families “change husbands every day.”
Raja Singh said that he hadn’t heard Malviya’s comment, but certainly agreed that some women do change husbands every day and this only takes place in film families and not outside. When questioned about whether or not he was insulting them, Raja Singh said that he would still go and protect any woman in the film industry like he was their own brother, if something happens to them or if there was any sort of fraud.
While Raja Singh later apologised for his comment, it had already created a huge furore on social media. But it certainly isn’t the first and won’t be the last time Raja has said something controversial. Just this year alone, Raja has been in the news multiple times.
Threatening to burn down theatres
Just two weeks ago, speaking to a Rajput gathering, Raja Singh had threatened to burn down theatres in Hyderabad if they screened Padmavati. Calling for a boycott of the film, Raja said that it is “every nationalist’s duty, every Hindu’s duty and every Rajput’s duty.” Later, he wrote to Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao asking for a ban on the film.
Asks Hindus in Bengal to respond like ‘2002 Gujarat’
In July, Raja was at the eye of another storm when he spoke about the communal clashes in Baduria and Basirhat districts of West Bengal. Raja then had said that Hindus in Bengal would be made to leave as Hindus in Kashmir were, and soon it would be converted into a state like Bangladesh.
In a video released then, Raja Singh can be heard saying, “This is why I appeal to my Hindu brothers, and Bengal tigers, to wake up. My brothers, you remember what happened in 2002 in Gujarat, when Hindus were killed. The way that the Hindus responded in Gujarat, today, there is a need for Hindus in Bengal to respond the same way.”
Raja, at this time already notorious for making hate speeches and communal statements, had a case booked against him.
The ‘mini Pakistan’ row
In May, he described Hyderabad’s Old City area as “mini Pakistan” and requested the Chief Minister to conduct a search operation in Old City, where “they would be able to find bomb and other explosives from a number of houses.” The police had registered a case against him then.
Calls Kashmiri Muslims ‘traitors’
In another video in May, Raja dubbed Kashmiri Muslims as “traitors”, and asked people visiting holy sites like Amarnath to not buy anything from them.
“If we don’t buy anything from them for a few years, these traitor Kashmiri Muslims will get on their knees and say that they don’t want Pakistan or ‘Azad Kashmir’, but that they will stay with India only,” he was heard saying.
Raja Singh on Ayodhya
In April, the BJP legislator, commenting about the Babri Masjid demolition case, demanded a Ram temple at the disputed site in Ayodhya, and said that he was ready to give his life, or take a life, for it.
Vande Mataram too
In another instance in April, he threatened people to sing Vande Mataram.
“You have to sing Vande Mataram. If you don’t sing it, you have no right to be in India. You will see soon that we don’t have to put a sword to your neck. You will lower your head, get on your knees and accept to sing it because you want to stay in India.”
Needless to say, an FIR was registered against him under Section 295A of the IPC. This FIR had come less than a week after an FIR was registered under the same sections for his comment on Ayodhya.
Calls Pinarayi a ‘murderer of Hindus’
In March, he threatened to stop a meeting organised by the CPI(M) in Hyderabad, which saw Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in attendance. Stating that the Hindu community was not safe in Kerala, he called Pinarayi “a murderer of Hindus”.
There are multiple other instances where Raja Singh has made controversial statements. As TS Sudhir pointed out in an earlier article, “Raja Singh does not subscribe to the image of a disciplined BJP soldier who would adhere to the party line on most matters.”