Modi government distances itself from Hegde's remarks

 The Narendra Modi government on Wednesday distanced itself from the remarks of Minister of State Anant Kumar Hegde who had criticised the word "secular" and said the BJP government would "amend the Constitution" to remove the word from the Preamble.

As a combined opposition in the Rajya Sabha protested against Hegde's remarks, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Vijay Goel told the House: "We are committed to the Constitution. We do not agree with the Minister's remarks."

Minister of State for Skill Development Hegde had on Sunday said at a public event in Karnataka that the Modi government would remove the word "Secular" from the Preamble of the Constitution.

"Seculars do not know what their blood is. Yes Constitution has given that right to say 'we are secular'.... but Constitution has been amended many times, we will also amend it. We have come to power for that," Hegde was reported as saying.

On Wednesday, the opposition sought Hegde's removal from the Council of Ministers and Parliament, saying he had insulted the Constitution of India as well as its architect Bhimrao Ambedkar.

The Opposition forced repeated adjournments over the issue.

-IANS