Defiant Rita Joshi blames Mayawati for burning of her house

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Moradabad (Uttar Pradesh), July 18 (ANI): Uttar Pradesh Congress chief Rita Bahuguna Joshi, who was released from a Moradabad jail on Saturday, categorically blamed state chief minister, Mayawati for burning her house.

"I maintain that there is nobody but the CM who is behind setting my house ablaze. It was done all at her behest. First, my servants were lifted from my place, and then the house was set afire. I will contest this issue now through court. I am ready to go to jail a hundred times," said Joshi after her release from jail on interim bail.

Stating she had already expressed her regret over the objectionable words she had used in reference to Mayawati, Joshi, however, said: "Mayawati has no right to remain chief minister of the state."

Clarifying on her remarks that prompted Mayawati to charge her under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities Against Dalit Women) Act, Joshi said she never believed in personal fights. "It was for the cause of Dalit women. I will continue my political struggle against the Uttar Pradesh CM."

Joshi, who had made some derogatory remarks against Mayawati at a public meeting, was arrested in Ghaziabad on Wednesday night while she was on her way to Delhi.

She was booked under 153 A (delivering inflammatory speeches) and section 109 of IPC (using abusive language) besides under provisions of SC/ST Atrocities Prevention Act.

Joshi was given interim bail on Saturday morning, but was released from the jail at about 5 p.m. after completing all official procedures.

On her release, she was literally mobbed by media persons.

Joshi looked visibly happy on her release. Before leaving the jail, she hugged a policewoman as a gesture of thanks.

Asked why no Congress party representative was on hand to be with her at the time of her release, she said it would be wrong to say that.

"It is not like nobody from the party is standing behind me. State MPs have also come to receive me," Joshi stated.

"Though I feel regretful for the one word that offended the "Mukhyamantriji" (the chief minister). But my whole statement was on behalf of and for highlighting the cause of Dalit women. I wanted to introduce the State CM with the plight of Dalit women and nothing else. I will continue my political fight for their cause," Joshi explained. (ANI)

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