BL impact: Chidambaram’s remark in Ishrat case has BJP fuming in Parliament

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on January 20, 2018 Published on April 25, 2016


Former Home Minister had accused BJP of diverting attention from ‘fake encounter’ killings

Former Home Minister P Chidambaram’s statements on the Ishrat Jahan case, as articulated in an interview to BusinessLine on Monday, sparked a counter-offensive from incensed BJP leaders.

BJP MP Kirit Somaiya raised the issue in the Lok Sabha during Zero Hour, while Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman took to Twitter to rhetorically ask whether “meddling with the affidavits (in the Ishrat Jahan case) is a crime of perjury with a dash of anti-national brazenness?”

The BJP leaders were responding to the former Home Minister’s comments in an interview to BusinessLine.

Chidambaram had, for the first time, owned up to the two affidavits filed in the Ishrat Jahan case during his tenure as Home Minister, and had accused the BJP of raking up a controversy to divert attention from the killing of four people, including Ishrat Jahan, in a fake encounter by the Gujarat police.

“This affidavit controversy is only to divert attention from the real issue in the Ishrat Jahan case. The real issue is, whether there was a fake encounter, and whether four people already in custody were killed in that fake encounter,” he had said.

Issue may crop up again

The BJP is again expected to raise in Parliament on Tuesday the issue of the two contrary affidavits filed by the UPA Government. The Congress, in the meantime, has mounted a counter-offensive on the Centre’s role in the Uttarakhand crisis.

During the Zero Hour, Somaiya accused a former Home Minister in the UPA Government of playing with national security by dubbing a terrorist a martyr.

He also took the name of another Home Minister in the erstwhile UPA Government, but Speaker Sumitra Mahajan disallowed it.

Rijiju joins in

Simultaneously, Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju accused Chidambaram of making a “delirious attempt to escape” in the Ishrat Jahan controversy by saying that an Under Secretary had signed the second affidavit, contradicting an earlier submission that the 19-year-old girl was an LeT activist.

“It is a delirious attempt to escape. An Under-Secretary signs an affidavit only after the Minister approves,” Rijiju told reporters here.

Published on April 25, 2016
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