Union minister Kiren Rijiju on Tuesday asserted that the soul of the martyred father of Delhi University student Gurmehar Kaur must be crying as her mindset is being polluted by people who celebrate when soldiers die in action.
Rijiju's comment may further stoke the controversy over Kaur's allegation of threats of rape and assault following her social media protest against the violence involving members of the RSS-backed ABVP at Delhi University's Ramjas College last week.
"She is the daughter of a martyr. But his soul must be crying as she is being misled by people who celebrate when our soldiers die," he told reporters here.
Rijiju said the 20-year-old girl has "full liberty to speak her mind" and she will be given total protection as her security is government's responsibility.
The Union Minister of State for Home said his remark on who was "polluting" the mind of an army martyr's daughter was aimed at "the Leftists".
Rijiju's comment came a day after he questioned whether someone was polluting Kaur's mind. His remark drew flak from opposition parties.
"I stand by my comments. Anybody who tweets on social media platform should be careful. But anyone with a contrary view should be allowed to speak. Gurmehar is a young girl and she should be allowed to speak her mind," he said.
"When I said somebody is polluting her (Gurmehar's) mind, I meant the Leftists," he said. Kaur had started a video campaign 'Not Afraid of ABVP'.
The Minister said if there was any threat to Kaur, it should be dealt with sternly. "But someone is playing politics over the issue," he said.
Rijiju also slammed the Leftists for their stand, saying whenever Indian soldiers die, "they always celebrate". "In 1962 when the Chinese were fighting with us, the Leftists supported the Chinese. Even today when our soldiers die, they celebrate. They also go to the universities and try to mislead our youth," he said.
The minister asked the Congress to stay away from universities as they have "no ideology".
He said everyone has the freedom to speak, they can speak against the Prime Minister, they can stage protests, but no one has the right to speak against the nation.
Rijiju's comments yesterday had come amidst the ongoing row over the clashes between the Left-affiliated AISA and the RSS-backed ABVP at Ramjas College. Kaur, daughter of Captain Mandeep Singh, who was killed by militants in Jammu and Kashmir in 1999, had made a video asking India and Pakistan to amicably settle their disputes.
She had held a placard, saying, "Pakistan did not kill my dad, war killed him." Kaur claimed she was getting "rape threats" from unknown persons after she spoke against the ABVP.