Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan on Sunday said that historian Irfan Habib had tried to charge at him at the inauguration of the 80th Indian History Congress at Kannur University.
"I sent a renowned Malayali writer on my behalf to call those who were protesting, for a discussion, but they said that they were here to protest and not for discussion. So I said that when you shut the doors of discussion then it creates an environment of violence and hate followed by a sentence of Gandhiji. The moment I said this, Irfan Habibji got up from his seat and wanted to charge me," Khan told ANI here.
"My ADC stopped him and then he (Habib) went behind the sofa and came from the other side. He was stopped by my security, ADC and others. Since he stood on the stage, some protesters created a ruckus there," Khan added.
The Kerala Governor said that the organisers had stretched the program with some speakers speaking against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and Kashmir issue while he was on the stage at the inauguration ceremony.
Refuting allegations that he was taking a political stand during his speech, the Governor said he was merely defending the Constitution and the law as per the responsibility which came with the post.
"I have taken an oath to protect and preserve the Constitution and the law. It is my duty and the duty of every person holding a constitutional office to defend a law which is passed by the Parliament," Khan said.
"I feel that what the Parliament has done today (regarding CAA), is giving legislative shape to the promise made by Mahatma Gandhi, Pandit Nehru and the Congress Working Committee to non-Muslim people of Pakistan, they had not wanted Partition. They had promised to them that they are welcome to come to India and they will welcome them," he added.
Earlier yesterday, the inauguration of 80th Indian History Congress at Kannur University witnessed unruly scenes with some delegates staging a protest against the Kerala Governor while he was delivering the inaugural address.
The protestors raised placards against the Citizenship Amendment Act and also shouted slogans.
During his speech, Governor referred to protestors and said, "You have every right to protest. But you cannot shout me down". This led to more commotion inside the auditorium. Police removed those who were protesting outside the auditorium.
Later, Governor summoned the university Vice-Chancellor Gopinath Raveendran to Kannur guest house. He asked him to carry complete CCTV footage of the event.
"Inaugural meet of Indian History Congress does not raise controversies. But at 80th session at Kannur University, Irfan Habib raised some points on CAA. But, when Governor addressed these points, Habib rose from seat to physically stop him, as clear from the video," read a post on the official twitter handle of Kerala Governor.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)