Didn't name any religion or community: Sakshi Maharaj defends remarkstext_fields
New Delhi: BJP MP Sakshi Maharaj, who was summoned by the Election Commission for his controversial statements on population, said on Wednesday that his remarks were made at a meeting called by religious leaders and he had not taken the name of any religion.
He also demanded a Uniform Civil Code on population control.
"Whatever I said was not at a public meeting or an election rally. I spoke at a meeting called by religious leaders," Maharaj said after coming out of the Election Commission of India headquarters here.
Maharaj said: "I didn't take the name of any religion or community, but only raised concerns over rising population. Population must be controlled, women are not machines to deliver babies."
The BJP MP was summoned by the ECI on Tuesday and issued show cause notice saying that it is prima facie of the opinion that he violated the Model Code of Conduct by making "impugned statements".
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader on January 7 stirred controversy with his comment in Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, that, "Population is rising rapidly, and so are the country's problems. But Hindus are not responsible for this. Those who talk about four wives and 40 children are responsible."
The Model Code of Conduct is in place in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh for the Assembly elections. The Supreme Court in a ruling last week said that any appeal for votes on the ground of "religion, race, caste, community or language" amounted to "corrupt practice" under the election law provision.