BJP says government should have taken steps after Rahul Gandhi’s statement

New Delhi, Jan.7: Commenting on recent news reports of the Lashkar-e-Taiba approaching Muzaffarnagar riot victims, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Tuesday said that if Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi had spoken about this issue earlier, why didn’t the Congress-led central government take any steps to probe the matter at that time.

“If Rahul Gandhi had any idea about the whole issue why didn’t the government do anything about it at that time?” asked Naqvi.

“Muzaffarnagar riots is one of the worst riots of the country and cannot be justified and there are a lot of facts hidden behind it,” he said.

“A lot of congress leaders had paid visits to the relief camps only with political intentions in mind. The riots been politicized,” he added.

BJP leader Captain Abhimanyu said the riots in Muzaffarnagar took place, as the Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh did not let the police do its work.

“Samajwadi Party has tried to communalize the whole incident and have played dirty and politics by trying to divide the people just to fill their vote banks, and Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi have only made it worse by going there,” said Captain Abhimanyu.

“Such kinds of politics only encourage terrorism in the country. It shows the two-faced nature of the government,” he added.

A group of men living in the riot-hit Muzaffarnagar’s relief camps have told investigators that two imams had approached them to join a Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) module, according to reports.

Two Haryana imams were arrested last month for their suspected links to Lashkar-e-Taiba.

According to reports, an LeT operative, had allegedly visited the relief camps of riots victims in Muzaffarnagar communal riots and sought to recruit men.

The men, who recorded their statements, are residents of relief camps in Muzaffarnagar and Shamli. They are believed to have told investigators that the two imams from Mewat-Hafeez Rashidi and Shahid-allegedly made numerous visits along with a senior LeT operative, currently on the run, according to reports.

Three months back, Rahul Gandhi had created a political stir and backlash, when he claimed that intelligence officers had told him about Pakistan’s ISI trying to recruit angry Muslim youth from Muzaffarnagar.

Forty-five people have died in the prosperous sugarcane district of Muzaffarnagar and surrounding areas since clashes erupted between Muslims and majority Hindu Jats – a conservative farming community – in a sign of rising tension between the two groups ahead of general elections due by May. Government officials say 10 of the dead are Hindus.

The riot-hit victims languish in some 40 schools and mosques that have been converted into relief camps across Muzaffarnagar and neighbouring areas, grateful for the safety in numbers and the three meals of rice and lentils provided daily.

The clashes were triggered on August 27 when a Muslim youth was stabbed to death by two Hindu youths after being accused of sexually harassing their sister. A Muslim mob stoned the two Hindus to death.

In the following days the police failed to deal with the perpetrators, and politicians from various parties gave inflammatory speeches, stoking tension between Hindus and Muslims who, local people say, had lived in this area in relative harmony since independence in 1947. (ANI)