June 18, 2024

It started as a journalist from The Wire, Rohini Singh, tweeted stating that “Has an FIR been filed in Guwahati yet against Obama for hurting sentiment?”

With another statement of Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Friday (Jun 23), a controversy was instigated as Sarma claiming that there are many ‘Hussain Obamas’ in the country and the state police will act according to its priorities. As the controversy broke out, the Opposition quickly hit back at the Assam CM.

It started as a journalist from The Wire, Rohini Singh, tweeted stating that “Has an FIR been filed in Guwahati yet against Obama for hurting sentiment? Is Assam police on it’s way to Washington to get Obama offloaded from some flight and arrest him?” The tweet was apparently referring to FIRs being lodged in Assam against opposition leaders over their remarks in different parts of the country.
The journalist’s post was on Former US President Barak Obama’s interview to CNN on Thursday (Jun 23), in which he said that if US President Joe Biden met Prime Minister Modi, then the protection of the Muslim minority in a majority Hindu India is “something worth mentioning.”

To the journalist’s tweet, Assam CM responded saying, “There are many Hussain Obama in India itself. We should prioritize taking care of them before considering going to Washington. The Assam police will act according to our own priorities.” His tweet came after PM Modi at White House, while addressing the Press, said that “there is no discrimination in India” on the grounds of caste or religion because his government follows the Constitution, which is formed on the basic values of democracy.

Soon after the tweet of Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma, tweets surfaced from various sections of the opposition as well as in support of the CM, about the issue. In a tweet opposing Assam CM’s statement, one of the users has mentioned, “For unknown reasons, Himanta Biswa Sarma helps prove that BJP uses State machinery to target Muslims. Not that Indians need proof about Narendra Modi, Adityanath & Sarma himself. The BJP Assam CM might think he struck a blow for Hindutva by calling Barack Hussein Obama Hussain.”

 

The tweet of Himanta Sarma was further intentionally portrayed as Anti-Muslim statement. A journalist from The Guardian mentioned in his tweet, “Indian politician Himanta Biswa Sarma lashed out at former U.S. president Barack Obama in a tweet, saying Indian police “should prioritize taking care of” the many “Hussain Obama” in India – a reference to country’s Muslim population.”

 

CPI (M)’s official twitter handle tweeted stating “Himanta Biswa Sarma – you bring disgrace to India with your Islamophobia, your intolerance for any type of questioning.” However, tweets surfaced in support of Assam CM as well. One of the tweets read, “Taking action against people who are working with anti-India forces is not an acknowledgement of discrimination. It is you who is emphasising on religion of Hussain Obama not Himanta Biswa Sarma.”

There are opinions surfacing on social media that PM Modi’s visit to US was successful. But his party-men, referring to Himanta Biswa Sarma, made it look bad.
 

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