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Prove you are brahmin, Anant Kumar Hegde tells Rahul Gandhi

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Hyderabad: Giving an indication of how bitter the election campaign could turn out, Union minister Anant Kumar Hegde asked Congress president Rahul Gandhi to prove he was a Brahmin.

He was responding to Mr Gandhi asking for proof that the Indian Air Force’s strike against terror camps in Pakistan after the Pulwama terror attack had succeeded.

“Look what situation they have brought our country down to. The entire world is acknowledging our bravery. But some people within our own country have raised doubts. They want proof for our IAF’s air strikes but this son of a Muslim calls himself a Gandhi, calls himself a Brahmin, does he give proof,” he asked to applause at a meeting at Kokthi, a village in Karnataka’s Bhatkal taluk.

“How does this son of a Muslim father and Christian mother (claim to be a Brahmin)... will he give proof,” Mr Hegde, a five-time MP, asked.

When some in the audience laughed during his remarks, the minister retorted:  “This is not a joke. When Rajiv Gandhi died, his body was blown into pieces. When his DNA had to be match with his kin, Mrs Sonia Gandhi declined to match it with that of Rahul Gandhi. Instead, it was matched with Priyanka Gandhi’s DNA. This is the truth. This is on record. Today, such people are asking for proof. We do not have any hybrid proof. Coconut might grow on a chilli plant in the Congress, but not in our place.”

Reacting to the comments, Karnataka Congress chief Dinesh Gundu Rao said on Twitter that Union minister was once again making “crude, crass and communal remarks against Rahul Gandhi”.

Mr Rao said Mr Hegde’s continuing “uncouth behaviour” indicated that he had the blessings of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah.

This was not the first time that the union minister has waded into another controversy. Earlier too, Mr Hegde had called the Congress president “a hybrid specimen” that cannot be found in any laboratory in the world.

He had also stoked controversy with his comments “the hand that touches a Hindu woman must not exist” a couple of months ago.
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