Updated: March 10, 2021 3:57:55 am
A day after a Delhi court convicted Ariz Khan, accused of being an Indian Mujahideen operative, of involvement in the Batla House encounter case in 2008, the BJP on Tuesday called the decision a “triumph of the judicial system” and a close to the “rampant vote bank politics over the last 12 years.”
Attacking the Congress, the TMC and other opposition parties that had questioned the, the BJP said the opposition parties “demoralised the police” for “pure vote bank politics”.
Addressing the media, Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said, “What has the court said in which they have found Ariz Khan guilty? That this was an attack on the unity and sovereignty of India. This was an act of terror. And after about a hundred witnesses and electronic evidence, they have found truth to this incident…. Khan was a serial terrorist and killer, involved in many other terror attacks, and was caught only in 2018 – once the Narendra Modi government came in.”
Prasad claimed that in 2008, when leaders such as late Arun Jaitley and he himself were in the Opposition they were contacted by “harassed members of Delhi Police”. He said, “I have no hesitation in saying that members of the Delhi Police contacted us and said, ‘Save us; a campaign has been launched to label us as attackers. What can we do for the security of the country?’…There was an attempt by the Congress to put this event in grave doubt. There was a conscious, deliberate, and consistent attempt to cast serious doubt over the authenticity of the Batla House incident.
He maintained that this was “designed to demoralise the Delhi Police, and give clear support to terrorist and their design. Why? For pure vote-bank politics.”
Besides the Congress and the party’s chief, Sonia Gandhi, Prasad specifically named TMC chief and West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, who is facing an electoral challenge from the saffron party in Bengal. Banerjee, the BJP leader said, reading out a news report dated October 18, 2008, had labeled it a fake encounter and had asked for a judicial inquiry. “Mamata-ji, what do you have to say (now)? I am showing you a public statement where you had said, ‘I will leave politics’,” Prasad said.
Taking on Congress leaders, he said, “What do you have to say, Salman Khurshid-ji? Are their tears coming out of Sonia-ji (eyes)? What do you have to say, Digvijaya Singh?”
Prasad said that the BJP demands an inquiry into the effects this “campaign” had on the morale of Delhi Police personnel.
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