Srinagar, April 15: Bhartiya Janta Party on Sunday distances from the remarks made by its leader and former Minister for Forests Chaudhary Lal Singh, who said that Chief Minister had “followed dictation from Hurriyat (G) Chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani” in Asifa rape- and- murder case.
Soon after tendering resignation following public outrage over his participation along with another party leader, Chander Prakash Ganga in Hindu Ekta Manch Rally in March, Singh spoke to media and said that the Chief Minister had rejected Crime Branch of India (CBI) investigation in this case “due to demand made by Geelani.”
BJP’s national vice-president and in-charge J&K affairs, Avinash Rai Khanna in a press conference here said that the comments made by Singh didn’t reflected party’s viewpoint.
“It might be his personal view not that of party,” he said.
Khanna said that both these leaders had participated in the Hindu Ekta Manch rally to pacify the mob.
“The situation at that time was such that both these ministers had to be sent to pacify the mob,” he said.
The party’s nation vice-president however said the use of Indian flag in the procession was “wrong”. “Whatever is wrong can’t be justified. The diversion and direction of that agitation was quite wrong,”
Khanna said that the BJP too was in favour of severe punishment to the accused. “Whatever happened with the girl is very wrong. We have been saying in the beginning that the guilty must be punished irrespective of religion or caste. The matter is currently in court and our party stands with justice,” he said.
Regarding Chief Minister’s statement on introducing death penalty punishment for rapists, Khanna said his party would have no issues in bring such laws.
“Laws are already there but if state governments’ introduces such laws we wo have not any issue”
The BJP’s J&K Affairs in-charge, who is on his visits to Kashmir till Tuesday said that he held a meeting with party members to review party’s situation at grass root level.
“We reviewed whether the Centre’s policies are benefitting the maximum people at grass root level. Both the state and central government are trying to restore peace within the valley so that our development agenda is fulfilled,” he said.