New Delhi, Oct 6 (PTI) With the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh facing flak over the Hathras incident in which a Dalit girl died after allegedly being gang-raped, the party on Tuesday hit back at the Opposition, saying it 'picks' such cases selectively for 'vote bank' considerations.
The party also announced it will launch a campaign in support of farm and labour reform laws, on which the Congress and other opposition parties have been holding protests.
After BJP president J P Nadda chaired the maiden meeting of newly-appointed national office-bearers of the party, its general secretary Dushyant Kumar Gautam told reporters that farmers across the country, except a few states, are in support of these measures and the protests in states like Punjab are politically “motivated”.
Nadda said at the meeting that the party will undertake a nation-wide campaign to spread awareness among farmers, according to Gautam.
Asked about crimes against Dalit women in places like Hathras in Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, Gautam slammed the opposition for its 'selective approach'.
“Concern was expressed (at the meeting). Any crime; rape, murder, is committed against a daughter whether Dalit or poor.... is abhorrent irrespective of which government is there...
'It is sad when people pick a crime looking at who is in power and which community the murderers or rapists belong to, what is the vote bank there,” he said in an apparent attack on the opposition parties.
The BJP government in Uttar Pradesh has drawn criticism over the Hathras incident, in which a 19-year-old Dalit woman died after being assaulted and allegedly gang-raped, and handling of the fallout. It has now recommended a CBI investigation.
Gautam said similar crimes occurred at four places in Uttar Pradesh and also in other states, including in Kerala and Madhya Pradesh, as he claimed that there is a “conspiracy” to divide the country.
This “love” for Dalits for vote bank is harmful to the country, he said.
Next year's assembly elections in states like Assam, West Bengal, Kerala and Tamil Nadu were also discussed at the meeting, he said, asserting that the BJP will form a government in West Bengal.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic also came in for praise, he said, adding that the government has worked to minimise the harm caused by the virus. PTI KR RT