Word war

Fact check: Modi distorted Mani Shankar Aiyar’s words to make ‘Aurangzeb Raj’ jibe at Congress

It is clear from Aiyar’s full statement that he did not compare the Congress to the Mughals while talking about the party’s presidential election.

At an election rally in Dharampur in Gujarat on Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi referred to a statement by Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar in which he claimed Aiyar had compared the Congress to the Mughal dynasty. Quoting Aiyer, the prime minister said, “… Shriman Mani Shankar Aiyar e aaje kahyu chhe, ke Jahangir ki jagah jab Shahjahan aaye, kya tab election hua tha? Jab Shahjahan ki jagah par Aurangzeb aye, tab kya koi election hua tha? Yeh to pehli se hi pata tha, ki jo badshah hai uski aulad ko hi satta milegi. Iska matlab ye hua ki Congress ke varisht neta yeh khud mante hai ki Congress party, ye party nahin hai, kunba hai, aur unka kisi ka satta ka matlab pe aane ka matlab hai, ki badshah ki aulad ka bethna. Yeh Aurganzeb raj, unko mubarak.”

(“Mani Shankar Aiyar has said, ‘When Shahjahan took the place of Jahangir, was any election held then? When Aurangzeb succeeded Shahjahan, was any election held then? This was always known, that the heir to the emperor will inherit power.’ This means that eminent leaders of the Congress themselves admit the Congress, it is not a party but a family and for them to come to power means to coronate the emperor’s heir. I congratulate the Congress on Aurangzeb Raj.”)

Modi was referring to a sound byte given by Aiyar to news channel ABP News on the nomination process for the election to the post of Congress president. (Rahul Gandhi filed his nomination on Monday and is set to be elected unopposed.) The Bharatiya Janata Party’s information technology cell head Amit Malviya tweeted this video with the text “Mani Shankar Aiyar does it again! Compares Congress rule with Mughal Raj”.

So, did Aiyar compare the presidential election within the Congress to Mughal succession? Watch the full video of what he said here:


Ek to, jab Jahangir ke jagah Shahjahaan aaye, tab koi election hua? Jab Shahjahaan ke jagah Aurganzaeb aaye, tab koi election hua? Nai. Pehle se pata tha, ki jo bhi badshaah hai, unke aulaad jo hai, woh hi banenge, woh bhi banenge, aapas mein lade to alag baat hai. Lekin, democracy mein chunaav hota hai, aur Shehzaad Punawala ko amantran mein de raha hoon, ki aapko yahaan aake khada hona ho to aap pahonch jaiye, application dijiye, aapne kabhi Shehzad Poonawala ka naam pehle kabhi suna tha?

(“When Shahjahan took the place of Jahangir, was any election held then? When Aurangzeb succeeded Shahjahan, was any election held then? This was always known that the heir to the emperor will inherit power, although it is another matter if the successors fight among themselves. But, in a democracy, elections are held. I invite [Congress functionary] Shehzad Poonawala to come and file an application to contest the election.”)

It is clear from the video that Aiyar did not draw a parallel between the Mughals and the Congress. However, that did not prevent prominent BJP functionaries from tweeting this incomplete video.

While Aiyar is known to have made some controversial statements in the past, including the infamous chaiwala remark, this is a definite instance of an incomplete statement being quoted out of context for political motives. Aiyar’s statement highlighting the difference between the party’s presidential election and dynastic rule under the Mughals was mischievously clipped and given credence to by none other than the prime minister. The Congress leader’s line that the process of electing the party president is democratic was conveniently glossed over to suit a particular narrative.

This article first appeared on Alt News.

We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

Some of the most significant innovations in automotive history made their debut in this iconic automobile

The latest version features India's first BS VI norms-compliant engine and a host of 'intelligent' features.

The S-Class, also known as Sonderklasse or special class, represents Mercedes Benz’ top-of-the-line sedan line up. Over the decades, this line of luxury vehicles has brought significant automotive technologies to the mainstream, with several firsts to its credit and has often been called the best car in the world. It’s in the S-Class that the first electronic ESP and ABS anti-lock braking system made their debut in the 20th century.

Twenty first-century driver assistance technologies which predict driver-behaviour and the vehicle’s course in order to take preventive safety measures are also now a staple of the S-Class. In the latest 2018 S-Class, the S 350 d, a 360-degree network of cameras, radars and other sensors communicate with each other for an ‘intelligent’ driving experience.

The new S-Class systems are built on Mercedes Benz’s cutting-edge radar-based driving assistance features, and also make use of map and navigation data to calculate driving behaviour. In cities and on other crowded roads, the Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC helps maintain the distance between car and the vehicle in front during speeds of up to 210 kmph. In the same speed range, Active Steering Assist helps the driver stay in the centre of the lane on stretches of straight road and on slight bends. Blind Spot Assist, meanwhile, makes up for human limitations by indicating vehicles present in the blind spot during a lane change. The new S-Class also communicates with other cars equipped with the Car-to-X communication system about dicey road conditions and low visibility due to fog, rain, accidents etc. en route.

The new S-Class can even automatically engage the emergency system when the driver is unable to raise an alarm. Active Emergency Stop Assist brings the car to a stop if it detects sustained periods of inactivity from the driver when Active Steering Assist is switched on. If the driver doesn’t respond to repeated visual and audible prompts, it automatically activates the emergency call system and unlocks the car to provide access to first responders.

The new Mercedes-Benz S 350 d in India features another notable innovation – the country’s first BS VI norms-compliant car engine, in accordance with government regulations to control vehicular pollution. Debuting two years before the BS VI deadline of 2020, the S 350 d engine also remains compatible with the current BS IV fuels.

The S 350 d is an intelligent car made in India, for Indian roads - in the Mercedes Benz S-Class tradition. See the video below to know what drives the S-Class series by Mercedes Benz.

To know more about the 2018 S-Class, click here.


This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Mercedes Benz and not by the Scroll editorial team.