Did Ashok Gehlot support the calls for Khalistan?
A clipped video is used to make such claims without the actual statement and context.
Congress CM Ashok Gehlot said if he can demand Hindu Rashtra then why can’t Amritpal demand Khalistan. The Congress is so shaken that in this panic, Gehlot ji has forgotten that only a Khalistani had killed Indira Gandhi just for the sake of votes.
Rajasthan is expected to conduct its assembly elections in December 2023. The Congress Government came to power in the state in the 2018 elections. Since 1993, no party had retained power in the subsequent elections in Rajasthan. So, the Congress is trying to retain power despite its internal problems with its current Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Sachin Pilot.
Sachin Pilot has announced that he will hold a “One-Day fast” on 11th April 2023 to protest against the state government to urge action into the deals of the Government. Meanwhile BJP is eager to get back into power in the state and the build-up to the elections are gaining momentum.
At this juncture, some BJP leaders including BJP Delhi’s Vice President Sunil Yadav and supporters of the right-wing including controversial filmmaker Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri share a video in social media with a claim that Ashok Gehlot is sympathetic towards the calls for Khalistan by the radical preacher Amritpal Singh.
अमृतपाल की बात सटीक लग रही है गहलोत को pic.twitter.com/LK9zRfxtBc
— Mohit Babu 🇮🇳 (@Mohit_ksr) April 1, 2023
What’s the truth?
With a keyword search, we found several articles from the Hindustan Times, The Print, The Jagran that was published on 1st April 2023. According to the articles, while addressing party workers in Bharatpur (Rajasthan), Ashok Gehlot said “if Mohan Bhagwat and Narendra Modi could talk about Hindu Rashtra, then why should I not talk about Khalistan? Look at his audacity. He got the courage to because you talk about Hindu Rashtra?”. He went on to add that it is easy to start a fire but takes time to extinguish it and if people of all castes and religion are taken along together, the country will remain united.
#WATCH | Politics is being done in the name of religion in the country. Amritpal Singh is saying that if Mohan Bhagwat & Narendra Modi talk about Hindu Rashtra, then why shouldn't I talk about Khalistan? It is easy to start a fire but it takes time to extinguish it: Rajasthan CM pic.twitter.com/fCZqJQ8h8A
— ANI MP/CG/Rajasthan (@ANI_MP_CG_RJ) March 31, 2023
On the same day, Ashok Gehlot also addressed the media. That video is being cut and shared by BJP supporters right now. The uncut version of the exchange that Ashok Gehlot had with the media can be seen here.
"अमृतपाल सिंह बोल रहा है कि अगर ये हिंदू राष्ट्र की बात कर रहे हैं तो मैं क्यों नहीं बात करूं खालिस्तान की, ये कितनी सटीक बात उसने कही है…"
राजस्थान के मुख्यमंत्री अशोक गहलोत ने खालिस्तान समर्थक अमृतपाल सिंह को लेकर कही बड़ी बात।#AmritpalSingh #AshokGehlot | @ashokgehlot51 pic.twitter.com/FexsYONoyt
— News Tak (@newstakofficial) April 1, 2023
He said, ”How audacious? I felt bad when Amritpal Singh said when they ask for Hindu Rashtra, why can’t I ask for Khalistan. What an accurate statement he had given. This is dangerous for the country. He’s saying if they are asking for Hindu Rashtra, why shouldn’t I ask? People from the south can also ask the same thing. Southern States had raised the same voice some 40-50 years ago. The younger generation people may not know this. We should be thinking about the country’s future.”
So, Ashok Gehlot was talking criticising the politics of BJP. From this, a small portion of the video is cut and shared without context by making false claims and insinuations that Ashok Gehlot is sympathetic to Amritpal Singh’s calls for Hindu Rashtra.
A clipped video of Ashok Gehlot is shared by some BJP leaders and supporters to claim/imply that Ashok Gehlot is supportive to Khalistan demands.