Call me Hindu, it's not religious: Kerala Governor Arif Khan
Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan on Saturday said the term "Hindu" should be used to refer to anyone born in India and living in the country, adding it is not a religious term. Khan's statements came at the opening ceremony of a Hindu conclave in Thiruvananthapuram, where he recalled the ideology of educationist and Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) founder Sir Syed Ahmed Khan.
Why does this story matter?
- Governor Khan's remarks come amid an ongoing tussle with Kerala's ruling Left Democratic Front (LDF) government.
- The LDF accused Khan of delaying important laws and interfering in state university affairs.
- On Sunday, he seemingly took an indirect dig at the Kerala government, claiming there is a conspiracy in the state to criticize anyone who says, "I am a Hindu," which could attract sharp responses.
Here's what Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan said
Recalling Sir Ahmed Khan's words, the Kerala governor stated he had a complaint with Arya Samaj, a Hindu reform group, over why it doesn't call him a Hindu. "I don't consider Hindu as a religious term...Hindu is a geographical term," Khan said at the Arya Samaj meeting, adding anyone born in India and living on the food produced here can call themselves a Hindu.
Rulers who followed Sanatana Dharma accepted everyone with equality: Khan
Khan remarked that before India's independence, the rulers and kings of the country who believed in the Sanatana Dharma respected all religions and treated everyone living in the country equally, reported Republic TV. Besides the governor, several politicians, including Union Minister V Muraleedharan, attended the conclave where Khan talked about the "Hindu" term and alleged there were conspiracies against using these days.
Kerala governor on alleged conspiracy to make 'Hindu' look wrong
Khan also claimed it was "perfectly fine" to use Hindu, Muslim, and Sikh terms even during British rule since such communities had become the foundation for determining people's basic rights. Khan, who is frequently in the news for his conflicts with the Kerala government, claimed there is an ongoing conspiracy in the state to make anyone saying, "I am a Hindu," appear wrong.
Images of the Hindu conclave shared on Twitter
Hon'ble Governor Shri Arif Mohammed Khan inaugurated the Hindu Conclave organized by the Kerala Hindus of North America (KHNA) and presented the Arsha Darsana Puraskaram to noted poet, lyricist and director Shri Sreekumaran Thampi at Thiruvananthapuram: PRO KeralaRajBhavan pic.twitter.com/a4jmAPxzwI— Kerala Governor (@KeralaGovernor) January 28, 2023