M A I N   N E W S

Banerjee panel used as tool: BJP
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 4
Charging Justice U C Banerjee with letting himself for "political manoeuvring", the BJP today said the probe committee's action in submitting the report had "played truant" with the judiciary.

The Banerjee Committee had promised the Gujarat High Court that it would not do anything until the court came out with its final order on burning of the Sabarmati Express coach, BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said here.

The Gujarat High Court was intending to pass an operative order on March 1 but deferred after the advocate for Banerjee Committee assured the Court that nothing will happen till March 7, Mr Javadekar said, adding "hence the submission and publication of the report in intervening period amounts to fraud on judicial process."

Condemning the publication of the report, he said the BJP regretted that a senior judge like Justice Banerjee had allowed himself to be used as a political tool at the hands of Railway Minister Lalu Prasad and the UPA.

"We are confident that UPA's plan to use this report in the coming elections will fall flat," he said.

Mr Javadekar claimed that the last time when Bihar Assembly elections were due, Justice Banerjee had publicised the interim report and the results were "now part of history".

After the announcement of dates for Assembly polls in West Bengal, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Assam and Pondicherry, Justice Banerjee has come out with final report, the motive of the UPA government is quite clear, Mr Javadekar said.

He said the Banerjee Committee did not have any legal locus-standi at a time when the incident had come up for judicial scrutiny at several levels, including state High Court, POTA Review Tribunal and the Supreme Court. None of the 126 accused persons got any relief from courts and it could not happen without substantial evidences against them, he said.

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