India Islamophobia row: Member of Narendra Modi's party called Muslim MP 'terrorist and pimp' in parliament

A row has broken out in India after an MP from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ruling party called a Muslim MP a terrorist in parliament.

Ramesh Bidhuri, an MP from the affluent area of south Delhi, called Danish Ali, an MP from Amroha, Uttar Pradesh, a Muslim terrorist and a pimp.

He also called Mr Ali "circumcised" - a slur often used for Muslims in India.

The remarks were made by the MP from Mr Modi's BJP party while speaking at a special session of parliament to debate a bill that would see a third of seats in the lower house of parliament and state assemblies reserved for women.

A video of the incident circulated widely on social media, with other BJP members seen laughing beside Mr Bidhuri.

After an abusive tirade, which stemmed from an argument about the prime minister, an emotional Mr Ali threatened to leave parliament if no action was taken.

In a post on X, formally known as Twitter, MP Mahua Moitra said that "abusing Muslims [is] an integral part of BJP culture - most now see nothing wrong with it.

"Narendra Modi has reduced Indian Muslims to living in such a state of fear in their own land that they grin and bear everything. Sorry but I'm calling this out."

Omar Abdullah, a politician from Indian-administered Kashmir, said: "This shows what they [the BJP] think about Muslims. They should be ashamed."

The remarks were removed from the parliamentary record.

Defence minister and former BJP president Rajnath Singh also issued an apology.

"I express regret if the opposition is hurt by the remarks made by the member," Al Jazeera and other Indian news outlets reported him saying.

Mr Ali has requested the issue be referred to parliament's privileges committee.

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in attacks on minority communities in India, including Muslims - who make up 14% of the country's population.

Mr Modi's party, often criticised for its nationalist ideology, has also come under fire for incidents of Islamophobia.