Karnataka’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Anantkumar Hegde has courted yet another controversy; this time for calling employees of state-run telecom giant BSNL “traitors”. The Uttara Kannada MP, known for his controversial remarks, also said that more than 88,000 BSNL employees will be sacked as the Centre will privatise the company.
“I am using the right words to describe them,” the lawmaker was purportedly heard saying in a video clip of the lawmaker when he was addressing a rally at Uttara Kannada’s Kumta, reported ThePrint. The former Union minister further termed BSNL as a “black spot” for the nation, it said.
“BSNL employees are traitors who aren’t willing to work to develop a well-known firm. More than 88,000 employees will be fired, as the government will privatise BSNL,” news agency ANI quoted the legislator as saying at the public event on Monday (August 10).
Hegde is known for making controversial statements. In 2017, when he was a minister in the Union cabinet, he had said the BJP government will change the Constitution. In 2019, when the Sabarimala issue was raging, he had termed the Kerala government’s handling of the protests against entry of women into the shrine, as “daylight rape of Hindus”.
Earlier this year, he had referred to the Indian freedom movement led by Mahatma Gandhi as an “adjustment” with the Britishers, and even questioned why the Father of the Nation was called ‘Mahatma’, irking his own party leaders as well as the Opposition.