BJP acuses Kashmir minister of inciting communal hatred

June 22nd, 2008 - 7:42 pm ICT by IANS  

Jammu, June 22 (IANS) Terming Jammu and Kashmir Deputy Chief Minister Muzaffar Hussain Baig as a “rabid communalist”, the state unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Sunday said it would lodge a criminal case of “inciting communal hatred” against him. While referring to Baig’s recent fulminations against the outgoing Governor Lt.Gen. (retd.) S.K.Sinha and his principal secretary Arun Kumar, BJP’s state leader Ashok Khajuria told a news conference here that the party would file a case against the deputy chief minister.

“He has not only berated the office of the governor, but also sought to provoke communal hatred,” Khajuria said.

Baig at a press conference in Srinagar had accused the governor of “setting Kashmir on fire” by taking offensive steps against Kashmiris through the tool of Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB). He had called Arun Kumar as a “disgrace to the bureaucracy, his parents”.

The SASB, headed by the state governor, manages Hindu holy cave shrine of Amarnath located in south Kashmir, which houses a ‘lingam’, or a stalagmite structure that is seen as an icon of Lord Shiva, one of the Hindu Trinity.

Khajuria said the remarks against the governor clearly reflect the “communal mindset of Baig”, and accused Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad of “being in league with Baig” for he had constituted a three-member panel to examine what Arun Kumar had said earlier at a news conference.

The BJP leader, however, did not elaborate as to when his party would file the case against Baig.

Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) firebrand leader Praveen Togadia, who arrived in Jammu Sunday, also charged Baig with “promoting terrorism”.

Togadia, the international general secretary of the VHP, told a public meeting that Baig was “brain behind terrorist activities in Jammu and Kashmir” and a stern action should be taken against him.

He alleged that there was a conspiracy in Kashmir to shut down Amarnath pilgrimage once for all.

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