Gujarat govt. criticised for shielding tainted legislator Solanki

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Junagadh (Gujarat), July 22 (ANI): Local MLA Dirsinh Barad from Kodinar in Gujarat's Junagadh district on Thursday blamed the Gujarat government's Home Ministry for shielding legislator Dinu Solanki, who allegedly masterminded the murder of social activist Amit Jethwa two days ago.

Barad criticised the State Government today while speaking to the media persons at Junagadh today.

On Tuesday, two unidentified motorcyclists killed Amit Jethwa, President of the Gir Nature Youth Club and a prominent RTI (Right to Information) activist outside the Gujarat High Court.

Jethwa was fighting against alleged illegal mining in the Gir Sanctuary areas of the state, which is said to have the backing of some politicians and their relatives, the suspect lawmaker being one of the prominent names.

Barad lashed out at Solanki and called him "a criminal".

"He (Dinu Solanki) is a criminal. He is getting full support from the Home Ministry. If not so, many murders could not have taken place in the past 12 years," said Dirsinh Barad.

Meanwhile, other RTI activists condemned the incident and said that the attempt by vested interests to suppress their crusade would not be successful.

They also said the work which Amit Jethwa could not complete would be their goal.

"We are not scared of anyone. This was a step to suppress his voice. We would not let it happen, we will complete his work," said Yusuf Juneja, a RTI activist.

The body of Amit Jethwa was brought to Junagadh where his final rites were performed. Apart from his family members, scores of his admirers and social activists paid their last respects to him.

Jethwa had filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the High Court, which alleged that mining activities were being carried out in the Una and Kodinar areas of Saurashtra.

He had mentioned in his petition that a minister of the Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled state government and his relations had lent support to these activities.

Jethwa had further alleged that the state minister and his relatives were also running illegal mines and stone crushers in a village on the border of the Gir forest. (ANI)

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