Bengaluru, Nov 10 Congress legislator Tanveer Sait on Sunday paid tributes to 18th century controversial Mysore ruler Hazrath Tipu Sultan (1750-1799) in Karnataka’s Srirangapatna on the latter’s 270th birth anniversary, a party official said.
“Though the BJP government discontinued Tipu Jayanthi from this year owing to opposition from its legislators and right-wing groups, Sait, cadres and religious leaders paid tributes to the erstwhile king by offering flowers and a shawl (chadar) to his tomb at Gumbaz in Srirangapatna,” party’s state unit spokesman Ravi Gowda told IANS here.
As the Karnataka High Court on November 6 did not stay the state government’s July 30 decision to ban Tipu Jayanthi on November 10 in its interim order but allowed it privately or personally, hundreds of Muslims celebrated it along with Prophet Mohammed’s birthday on Eid-Miladin-Nabi across the southern state amid tight security.
Sait, a four-time lawmaker from the Narasimharaja assembly segment in Mysuru, about 150 km southwest of Bengaluru, is also chairman of Tipu’s Saheed Wakf Estate in the state’s cultural capital.
Inayath ur Rahman Rizvi, Shahi Imam, Masjid e Aqsa, Gumbaz, prayed and read some verses of the Holy Quran.
Mandya district Waqf advisory committee chairman Shaik Ubaidn Ull, Sultan Sheed Waqf Estate secretary Irfan Pasha, former corporator K.C. Shoukath Pasha, entrepreneur Iyas Baig and social workers Mohammad Mumtaz Ahmed, Iqbal Pasha, Mohammad Irfan, Khaleel Ur Rahman Affu and Abdul Khader Shahid were present at the Gumbaz.
In its interim order on the public interest litigation (PIL), the high court’s division bench, headed by Chief Justice Abhay S Oka and Justice S.R. Krishnakumar directed the state government to reconsider its July 30 cabinet decision and respond by third week of January, 2020.
The previous Congress government revived Tipu Jayanthi in November 2015 and continued till 2018 when it was in the 14-month coalition government with the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) till July 23 despite opposition by the BJP then.
The ruling BJP and its right-wing allies consider Tipu a tyrant, religious bigot and anti-Hindu who forcibly converted hundreds of the Hindus to Islam and persecuted those who opposed.
The opposition Congress, however, claim Tipu was a valiant hero, secular and a freedom-fighter who fought the British to protect his kingdom and its people from the invaders.