Patna, Aug 7: Armed with Justice (Rtd) N N Singh's report in the 1989 Bhagalpur Riots case which was laid in Bihar Assembly, BJP today questioned Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's decision to ally with RJD and Congress as the incident occurred during Congress regime and some accused were absolved during RJD-led government in late 1990s.
"Kumar must explain his secularism as well as his party -JD(U)'s alliance with RJD and Congress as Bhagalpur riots had taken place during Congress regime in which hundreds of Muslims were killed by the rioters, some of whom were absolved of all charges in police probe during RJD rule in late 1990s," senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi told reporters.
"Does not Kumar's secularism stand exposed as he finds himself aligned with a party during whose rule the sordid incident had taken place and another party which had given clean chit to some of the perpetrators," he asked.
Modi also questioned chief minister Nitish Kumar's intent for tabling the judicial report on the riots case in the Assembly at the fag end of his term and claimed that the latter was trying to kill two birds with one stone, he said referring to the RJD supremo Lalu Prasad and Congress, both of whom espoused secularism.
With the secular alliance facing an uncertain future post-Assembly polls due later this year, the senior BJP leader claimed that Kumar was trying to usurp secularism plank from Congress and RJD to prop him up politically in the long run.
Modi slammed the state government for tabling the report on the very last sitting of the Bihar legislature even when the report was was submitted to it six months ago by the Bhagalpur riots Probe Commission headed by retired judge N N Singh.
The 1989 communal riots in Bhagalpur had claimed over 1,000 lives and left in its wake a trail of devastation. "Why did it take the state government so long to prepare ATR in Bhagalpur riots case and whom does it want to shield for denying justice to the riot victims, mostly minorities?" the former deputy chief minister asked.
He alleged that RJD supremo denied justice to the riot victims and their families saying that in addition to shoddy police investigation, lack of political will was also responsible for sufferings of the riot-affected people.
Many of them made distress sale of their property at the hands of perpetrators, a fact that the latest judicial report has thrown light on by reopening 27 cases, he said.
Claiming equal credit with the chief minister for commitment to provide justice to the victims of Bhagalpur riots, Modi said that the NDA government had set up a judicial commission under the chairmanship of retired judge N N Singh on February 24, 2006 which re-opened many cases bringing the prime and other accused to justice.