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‘Poha is the new beef’ — Twitter reacts after Vijayvargia says how he caught ‘Bangladeshis’

Kailash Vijayvargiya said he suspected there were some Bangladeshis among construction workers at his house recently because they were eating poha.

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New Delhi: BJP leader Kailash Vijayvargiya received a lot of flak on the internet after his statement that he detected some “Bangladeshis” among construction labourers working at his house because they were eating “only poha” (flattened rice).

The BJP general secretary made this statement at a seminar in support of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in Indore Thursday.

Vijayvargia said the “strange” eating habits of the labourers had aroused his suspicion about their nationality. According to a PTI report, he also spoke about this to the contractor and the supervisor, and said the workers stopped coming to work two days after he expressed suspicion about their nationality.

Soon after the news spread, Twitter erupted with criticism and witty one-liners, with some even taking jibes at the Narendra Modi government’s idea of a pan-India National Register of Citizens (NRC).

Many took jibes at the government for deciding one’s nationality on the basis of food habits.

Many users also pointed out how poha is a very common, everyday dish consumed for breakfast across states, especially in Maharashtra.

Twitterati took a dig at Vijayvargiya’s statement by comparing it to the Modi government’s decisions on consumption of beef.

Many Twitter users came out in support of poha and said it was part of a normal diet for scores of Indians.

Alt News Co-Founder Mohammed Zubair even shared a November 2019 picture of cricketer-turned-BJP politician Gautam Gambhir eating poha.

Vijayvargia’s statement comes at a time when the country has been witnessing massive protests against the CAA, with demonstrators citing that the new law is discriminatory in nature against Muslims. CAA makes grant of citizenship easy for six persecuted minorities, barring Muslims, from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh who arrived in India before 31 December 2014.

In the seminar Thursday, Vijayvargia also claimed that a Bangladeshi terrorist was keeping a watch on him for the last one and half years. “Whenever I go out, six armed security personnel follow me. What is happening in this country? Will outside people enter and spread so much terror?” he told PTI.

Vijayvargiya had garnered criticism earlier this month too after he said he would have set Indore on fire if a scheduled RSS meet wasn’t under way in the city.

(With inputs from PTI)

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