BJP and Samajwadi Party were on Thursday locked in a blame game over the Muzaffarnagar riots inquiry report while Congress and BSP attacked the two parties, demanding strict action against those indicted for the communal violence.
While BJP dismissed allegations of involvement in the violence, party MLA Sangeet Som, who is also an accused in the riots, rejected the report of Justice Vishnu Sahay Commission and claimed that there was “sufficient proof” against leaders of ruling Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh.
“I want to ask whether our statements were taken by the Commission. We have sufficient proof against SP leaders and officers responsible for the Muzaffarnagar riots. We reject the report. It has no meaning,” he told reporters.
Som, who was given Z category security last year by the Modi government, was speaking a day after the one-man Commission submitted to UP Governor Ram Naik the inquiry report into the 2013 riots in Muzaffarnagar and surrounding districts of western Uttar Pradesh which had left over 60 people dead and tens of thousands of others displaced.
The Samajwadi Party alleged that most of the leaders chargesheeted in the riots were from the BJP and accused the party of defending and even “rewarding” them. “Most of the leaders who have been chargesheeted and are facing trial for heinous offences in the riots are from BJP,” Gaurav Bhatia, spokesperson for the Samajwadi Party, alleged. He said the party will take action against any leader found complicit and “will not try to defend them like the BJP”.
SP spokesman Rajendra Chowhury blamed “communal forces” for vitiating the atmosphere in the state. The Congress demanded strict action against those who “participated, perpetrated and instigated” riots and are responsible for the killing of innocent people, irrespective of their party.
“It is a very serious report. It has vindicated what we have been saying from day one,” Congress Party spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said in Delhi. He said the “report has named” the people who are known and enjoying ministership, adding, “no action was taken against them.”
“Action needs to be taken against all those who are ideologically and physically responsible for what happened in Muzaffarnagar,” another Congress leader Manish Tewari said.
“The difficulty in this country is that such inquiry committee reports are confined to the record room, where they gather dust,” he said. BSP supremo Mayawati demanded that the Commission’s report be made “public” and alleged SP and BJP had colluded in the riots.
“Though riots in SP regime are routine, Muzaffarnagar riots showed lax attitude of SP and its connivance with BJP. Due to riots, which spread in Shamli, Meerut and Saharanpur districts, a number of Muslims were displaced. The SP government ran bulldozers over displaced persons living on government land,” she said in a statement here.
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