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Jammu Kashmir

Posted at: Apr 18, 2018, 1:11 AM; last updated: Apr 18, 2018, 1:11 AM (IST)KATHUA CASE

Out of Cabinet, Lal Singh goes vitriolic against CM

Accuses her of conspiring with Geelani to discredit Dogras
Out of Cabinet, Lal Singh goes vitriolic against CM
Choudhary Lal Singh addresses a rally in Jammu on Tuesday. PTI

Dinesh Manhotra & Sanjay Pathak

Tribune reporters

Jammu/Kathua, April 17

Bharatiya Janata Party MLA from Basholi Choudhary Lal Singh has launched a counteroffensive against Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, charging her with hatching a deep-rooted conspiracy with Syed Ali Shah Geelani to demonise, humiliate and discredit the ethnic Dogra minority of the state.

Lal Singh had to resign from the Council of Ministers recently for demanding a CBI probe into the Kathua rape-murder case.

“People of Jammu, who were demanding a CBI probe to ensure justice to the rape and murder victim, are being dubbed pro-rapists by Mehbooba Mufti and other Kashmir-centric groups only to demonise the whole Dogra race,” Lal Singh alleged.

He kick-started his mass contact programme from the Gandhi Chowk area in Satwari on Tuesday.

Instead of organising a rally, Lal Singh addressed roadside meetings on the Jammu-Pathankot highway from Jammu to Kathua.

“The minor girl, who was raped and murdered in the first week of January, was a daughter of Dogras. People of Jammu want justice with the victim. The demand for a CBI probe was raised because the local police failed to solve the case,” Lal Singh said amid ‘we want a CBI inquiry’ slogans.

“Since 1947, we have been frustrating the nefarious designs of Geelani-like people. So, to demonise our Dogra race, they manipulated things and painted our whole ethnic community as pro-rapists just for supporting the demand for a CBI probe,” Lal Singh said at Bari Brahmana.

He minced no words in attacking the Chief Minister for her failure to tackle the law and order situation in the state. “Being the Home Minister of the state, Mehbooba Mufti has failed to protect a minor girl. She has lost the moral right to stay on the chair,” the BJP MLA said.

He asked the Chief Minister to resign on moral grounds. “It is her (Mehbooba Mufti’s) biggest failure. If she has wisdom and conscience, she should resign,” he told reporters in Samba.

“If two ministers can sacrifice their posts in the interest of peace, those who are actually responsible for creating such an atmosphere should listen to their conscience,” he said.

Lal Singh also said that he would press for a CBI probe into the incident.

Overwhelmed by people’s response at Ghagwal, Kootah and Kathua, the former Forest Minister alleged that Mehbooba Mufti was merely a puppet in the hands of Syed Ali Shah Geelani and other separatist leaders. “Mehbooba and other ministers are dancing to the dictates of Geelani who is calling the shots in the government,” he said.

Panthers Party demands CBI inquiry

  • Political and social organisations on Tuesday raised the demand for a CBI probe into the murder and alleged rape of an eight-year-old tribal girl in Kathua.  “We need a transparent investigation into the case. It has been the demand of people from day one,” said Harsh Dev Singh, chairman, Panthers Party.
  • Raising slogans against the state government, Panthers Party workers said Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti not only turned down the appeal of BJP ministers to conduct a CBI investigation but successfully forced the saffron party to sack its two ministers.
  • The Jammu West Assembly Movement (JWAM) also sought a fair probe into the case. It alleged that the PDP-BJP government had divided the state for political gains.
  • “All parties are all indulging into politics. People of Jammu are seeking justice for the victim, but only a fair probe by the CBI will reveal the truth,” said Sunil Dimple, president, JWAM. TNS
Questions ‘tainted’ cop’s role in probe 

Choudhary Lal Singh questioned the involvement of a ‘tainted’ police officer in the Kathua case investigation. “How can one expect a fair trial in the investigation when one of the members of the Special Investigating Team was charged with murder and rape?” he asked, alleging that officers of such credentials were specially involved in the investigation to deny justice to the victim.

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