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Behead Danish cartoonist, get Rs 51 crore, says UP minister
Shahira Naim
Tribune News Service

Lucknow, February 17
Adding a new dimension to the anti-Denmark protests, an Uttar Pradesh minister today declared a cash reward of Rs 51 crore for the person who would behead the Danish cartoonist who drew the controversial cartoons of Prophet Mohammad.

Minister for Minority Affairs and Haj, Haji Mohammad Yaqoob speaking at a massive public rally, organised at the Faizan Inter College in his constituency Meerut, made the declaration on behalf of the people of the city. The person who did the deed would also be weighed in gold, said the minister.

Urging the Centre to break off diplomatic relations with Denmark, Haji Yaqoob did not even spare the US for its reported connivance in spearheading a worldwide anti-Islam campaign.

Strongly condemning the minister’s statement, a member of the All-India Muslim Personal Board and Naib Imam of the Eidgah Masjid Maulana Khalid Rashid said the statement was anti-Islamic as it was against the basic teaching of Islam.

Lodging his protest against Haji Yaqoob’s statement, Maulana Khalid Rashid asserted that the statement reportedly made on behalf of the people was unfair to the Muslims of Meerut as it projected them as a bunch of intolerant fanatics baying for blood.

According to Home Secretary Alok Sinha, the statement was not a violation of any law and did not demand any action against the minister. This is a very sensitive matter and he was expressing the peoples’ sentiment, Sinha said.

Meanwhile, there was widespread protest demonstrations against the cartoons in several districts, including Bulandshahr, Mau, Etah, Jaunpur, Bahraich, Muzzafarnagar and Meerut.


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