Continuing his campaign for a CBI probe into the rape-murder of an eight-year-old Kathua girl, BJP MLA from Basholi and former Forest Minister Choudhary Lal Singh on Thursday led a ‘justice march’ in Jammu.
Lal Singh, who was made to resign from the Cabinet by his party recently for meeting the agitating people of Kathua, said he would continue to fight for a fair probe by an independent agency. “We want a probe by the CBI. This is the opinion of people. I am doing my karma,” the former minister said. He said if the court feels any wrongs have been done, it could also order a fresh probe.
When asked by mediapersons about the divisions in the BJP over the issue and Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh not hinting at a fresh probe during his press conference, he said: “I have raised the demand as a BJP leader. I am out of the government. They are part of the government and it is their view.” Meanwhile, a large number of civil society members participated in the rally and demanded justice to the victim.
“We demand a CBI probe as people have no faith in the Crime Branch. Let there be fresh investigation to unveil the truth,” said Sunil Sharma, one of the participants in the rally.
People drawn from various parts of Jammu took part in the rally.
“Why is the state government afraid of ordering a fresh probe? We are for strong punishment to the perpetrators of the hideous crime. But the government should listen to people,” said another participant in the rally.
Meanwhile, Lal Singh on Thursday said the state government buckled under the pressure of a “separatist lobby” that opposed an investigation by the CBI into the Kathua rape and murder.
Singh led a candle march demanding a CBI probe into the dastardly rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl.
“What is the government afraid of?” he said.
“The Jammu region and the Dogras,” Singh said, “have been projected as rapists by the media which is very shameful for us. We are not such people. We have been defamed,” he told the gathering.
Lal Singh and another BJP minister Chandra Prakash Ganga resigned reportedly on party high command’s orders after outrage over their attendance at a rally in support of the eight accused persons.
“We will not rest till a CBI inquiry is ordered,” he said. He also asked why “Kashmiri officers” were appointed to probe the crime.
“Attempts are being made to spread Kashmir infection in Jammu but we will not allow anyone to disturb communal harmony here,” he said.