Tripura CM apologises for remarks on Punjabis, Jats

Deb said he mentioned the views of some people about the communities and it was not to hurt anyone

Biplab Deb
Biplab Deb reportedly enjoys the confidence of the prime minister | File Photo

Two days after stating that Punjabis and Jats were physically strong but less intelligent than Bengalis, Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb on Tuesday (July 21) apologised for making the statement and said he was proud of both Punjabi and Jat communities, NDTV reported.

In a series of tweets, Deb said he had mentioned the views of some people about the Punjabis and Jats and his statement was not to hurt any community. “I am proud of both Punjabi and Jat communities. I have lived among them for quite some time,” he said in a tweet, apologising if his statement had hurt anyone’s feelings.

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“I always salute the contributions of the Punjabi and Jat communities in the freedom struggle of the country. And I can never imagine raising questions on the role played by these two communities in advancing India,” Deb tweeted.

Addressing a programme at the Agartala Press Club on Sunday (July 19), Deb said every community in India was known for its certain type and character. “For Bengal or Bengalis, it is said that one should not challenge them when it is regarding intelligence. Bengalis are known as very intelligent and it is their identity,” Deb was heard saying in the clip.

“When we talk about the people of Punjab, we say he’s a Punjabi, a Sardar. They may have less intelligence but are very strong. One can’t win them over by strength but with love and affection. A large number of Jats live in Haryana. So what do people say about Jats? They are less intelligent but are very healthy. If one challenges a Jat, he will bring a gun from his house,” Deb had said.

Posting the video on Twitter, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said, “The comments were indicative of the mindset of the BJP.”

(With inputs from agencies)

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