Indian MP held for Islamophobic slur

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Indian MP held for Islamophobic slur

Indian police arrested a ruling party politician on Tuesday after he caused a storm with Islamophobic remarks that were broadcast on social media, reported DW, quoting news agencies AFP and Reuters.

Raja Singh is a state lawmaker with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Hindu nationalist BJP party. He was arrested on suspicion of "promoting enmity in the name of religion."

His remarks targeted Munawar Faruqui, a popular Muslim comedian harassed and threatened by Hindu nationalists for his religious subject matter.

Faruqui performed in Singh's native city of Hyderabad last week. Singh had earlier threatened to burn down the venue, local media reported.

As his tirade against Faruqui began doing the rounds, protestors gathered to call for his arrest, saying he insulted Muhammad, the founder of Islam.

Local police confirmed later confirmed the arrest. Singh has since been released and the BJP announced it was suspending his party membership.

Singh now has 10 days to reply to an internal inquiry to avoid expulsion from the party.

Tensions on the rise

His arrest comes weeks after a prominent BJP spokesperson ignited protests across India and its neighbors when she commented on the relationship between Muhammad and his youngest wife on a TV debate programme.

Nupur Sharma was suspended from the party's ranks in June after her remarks prompted the governments of nearly 20 countries to call in their Indian envoys for an explanation.

Two people were killed in clashes between police and Muslim protesters the same month, while two Muslim men were arrested for the gruesome murder of a Hindu tailor who had posted on social media in support of Sharma.

Indian MP held for Islamophobic slur

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