New Delhi: Meghalaya Governor Tathagata Roy has criticised Nobel laureate Amartya Sen over his controversial remarks that the ‘Jai Shri Ram’ slogan is not associated with Bengali culture and is being used these days to beat up people. Also Read - BJP Trying To Torch Bengal Through Riots, Trying To Break Universities Like JNU: Mamata Banerjee
“Are Ramrajatala and Serampore in West Bengal or somewhere else? Don’t we say Ram-Ram when we are scared of ghosts? He won a Nobel Prize in economics, he should stick to his subject,” Roy was quoted by news agency ANI as saying in Kolkata. Also Read - Amartya Sen 'Touched’ by Mamata's Support, Banerjee Says Nobel Laureate Attacked for Views Against Centre
Earlier on Friday, Amartya Sen had stoked a controversy by claiming that the stature that ‘Maa Durga’ enjoys here (bengal) cannot be compared to Ram Navami…. These are recent imports to wage a war.” Also Read - '...in Your War Against Intolerance, Totalitarianism': Mamata Writes to Amartya Sen on Land Row
“I haven’t heard Jai Shri Ram earlier. It is now used to beat up people. I think it is has no association with Bengali culture. Nowadays, Ram Navami is celebrated more in Kolkata which I haven’t heard earlier,” Sen had said.
He added,“I asked my four-year-old grandchild who is your favourite deity? She replied that it is Maa Durga. Maa Durga is so much omnipresent in our lives. What I feel is slogans like Jai Sri Ram are used as pretexts to beat up people.”
Sen’s comment comes days after a man in West Bengal’s Coochbehar district was beaten up for not uttering ‘Jai Shri Ram’. The incident of Tufanganj surfaced after a video clip was circulated on social media. In the video, a man was being made to do sit-ups holding his ears and forced to say ‘Jai Shree Ram’. The man followed helplessly.
Besides, several cases of scuffle between Trinamool Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party workers over chanting of ‘Jai Shri Ram’ have been reported in the state.