Mecca Masjid blast verdict: BJP asks Cong to apologise for coining term ‘saffron terror’

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Hindustan Surkhiyan Desk:The BJP on Monday asked the Congress party to apologize for coining the term “saffron terror” even as it accused the opposition party of “appeasement politics” and “defaming” the Hindu religion.

BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra made the demand after a Special NIA court acquitted all five accused in the Mecca Masjid Bomb blast case earlier in the day.

“Today after the verdict, the Congress’ face has been exposed as never before,” IANS quoted Patra as saying.

A special NIA court on Monday acquitted all the five accused including Swami Aseemanand in the 2007 case of Mecca Masjid blast which claimed nine lives.

Patra alleged that the Congress has long “defamed” Hindus for votes and demanded that party president Rahul Gandhi and his predecessor Sonia Gandhi apologise for terms such as “saffron terror” and “Hindu terror”.

Slamming the Congress, he said: “A former official R.V.S. Mani told the media today that Home Minister (P. Chidambaram) was involved in changing the files.

“To hide the truth, to change the truth and to change whatever was already submitted in the court through affidavit, this is what Chidambaram and others in the Congress dispensation were doing just in order to prove saffron terror.

“Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi must apologise to the nation.”

The BJP leader said that those who follow Indian politics are remembering the 2013 Congress’s Jaipur convention where then party President Sonia Gandhi, then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Rahul Gandhi were sitting on the dias.

“Then Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde in his address to the party workers read out the term saffron terror. By doing this he defamed the centuries-old Hindu religion,” he alleged, adding that all the senior party leaders remained silent.

Patra said “Hindu terror” was first used by Chidambaram in 2010.

Hitting out at Shinde, Patra said, “At the height of the appeasement politics, in 2013, Shinde sent notices to all the Chief Ministers saying to not arrest any innocent Muslim youth.”

Mecca Masjid Blast Case:

A special NIA court on Monday acquitted all the five accused including Swami Aseemanand in the 2007 case of Mecca Masjid blast which claimed nine lives. The blast at the historic Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad on May 18, 2007 during Friday prayers had also left 58 others injured.

After initial investigation by the local police, the case was transferred to the Central Bureau Of Investigation (CBI), which filed a charge sheet.

Subsequently, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) took over the case from the CBI in 2011.

Ten persons allegedly belonging to right-wing organisations were named as accused in the case.

However, only five of them — Devendra Gupta, Lokesh Sharma, Swami Aseemanand alias Naba Kumar Sarkar, Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar alias Bharat Bhai and Rajendra Chowdhary – were arrested and faced trial in the case.

Two other accused — Sandeep V Dange and Ramchandra Kalsangra — are absconding while another accused Sunil Joshi died. Investigations were continuing against two other accused.

A total of 226 witnesses were examined during the trial and as many as 411 documents were exhibited.

Swami Aseemanand and Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar are out on bail while three others are lodged in the central prison here under judicial remand.

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