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‘They are Sanskari brahmins’: BJP MLA defends release of Bilkis Bano case convicts

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New Delhi, Aug 18: Bharatiya Janata Party MLA CK Raulji who was on the panel that recommended the release of 11 convicts who gang-raped Bilkis Bano defended the decision saying they are Brahmins and men of Good Sanskaar.

As per the report by Mojo Story, he also said, "Their conduct in jail was good."

Bilkis Bano

"I don't know whether they committed any crime or not. But there has to be intention of committing crime," CK Raulji is heard telling the reporter from Mojo Story.

"They were Brahmins and Brahmins are known to have good sanskaar. It might have been someone's ill intention to corner and punish them," added the MLA in the interview, which has gone viral on social media.

Meanwhile, Bilkis Bano, a survivor of the 2002 post-Godhra riots in Gujarat, has said the premature release of all the 11 convicts serving life sentence has shaken her faith in justice and left her numb.

'I am still numb': Bilkis Bano on release of convicts'I am still numb': Bilkis Bano on release of convicts

She has appealed to the Gujarat government to "undo this harm" and give back her right to "live without fear and in peace".

The 11 convicts, sentenced to life imprisonment in the 2002 case of Bilkis Bano's gang-rape and murder of her seven family members during the riots, walked out of the Godhra sub-jail on Monday after the BJP government in Gujarat allowed their release under its remission policy.

Criticising the move, Bilkis Bano on Wednesday said nobody enquired about her safety and well-being before taking "such a big and unjust decision."

"On August 15, 2022, the trauma of the past 20 years washed over me again when I heard that the 11 convicted men who devastated my family and my life and took from me my three-year-old daughter had walked free," she said in a statement released by her lawyer Sobha.

"I was bereft of words. I am still numb," said the survivor of the gang-rape and murder of her family members in one of the worst riots triggered by the Godhra train-burning incident.

Bilkis Bano said all she could say is "how can justice for any woman end like this?" "I trusted the highest courts in our land. I trusted the system, and I was learning slowly to live with my trauma. The release of these convicts has taken from me my peace and shaken my faith in justice," she said.

"My sorrow and my wavering faith are not for me alone but for every woman who is struggling for justice in courts," she said.

The survivor asked the state government to ensure her safety and of her family members post the release of the convicts.

"I appeal to the Gujarat government, please undo this harm. Give me back my right to live without fear and in peace. Please ensure my family and I are kept safe," she added.

The Gujarat government had released all 11 convicts after the Supreme Court directed it to consider their plea for relief under the 1992 remission policy.

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