Akhilesh attacks BJP over Muzaffarnagar riots

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Akhilesh Yadav
Lucknow, Sep 18: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav today hit out at BJP over the Muzaffarnagar riots, accusing it of vitiating the atmosphere ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, and promised stern action against all those found guilty.

"BJP is out to vitiate the communal atmosphere in the state in view of the coming Lok Sabha elections and some people played an active part in the riots," an unusually aggressive Chief Minister told the Assembly in his reply during a debate on the Muzaffarnagar riots.

"The incident was a planned one to help one party gain political mileage on the situation," he said. Training his guns on the BJP, the Chief Minister asked the party MLAs whether their members had not circulated objectionable material in the form of SMS and fake clippings.

Akhilesh asked, "What is the guarantee that there are no more attempts to spoil the atmosphere?" Asserting that his government had acted promptly in controlling the situation, he said it would not take any action which is biased.

Taking a tough stand, he said officials found guilty would not be allowed to go scot-free. "An inquiry commission has already been set up and all the officials found guilty will be punished," he said, adding that rioters would also be penalised.

Terming the riots as unfortunate, he said both the communities suffered losses. "Houses of both Hindus and Muslims were gutted," he said. In an apparent defence of Parliamentary Affairs Minister Azam Khan, who is in the midst of controversy after his name figured in a sting operation, Yadav said he was aware of the reality of such things."It is cut and paste which is called sting," he said.

A news channel aired the sting operation in which two police officers reportedly admitted delaying action to contain Muzaffarnagar riots under "political pressure". In an oblique reference to the suspension of SDM Durga Shakti Nagpal, he said it was termed as oppression, conspiracy and other things, but such decisions are taken and officials are removed from their posts routinely.

PTI

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