Cong, BJP lock horns over battle of 'lies'
New Delhi: A war of words broke out yesterday over the alleged flip-flop on the affidavits in the Ishrat Jehan encounter case, with BJP accusing the Congress of having attempted to frame Narendra Modi and Amit Shah in the sensational encounter killing and demanding a probe into the issue.
A file photo of Ishrat Jehan and three others after the alleged fake encounter by the Detection of Crime Branch (DCB) of the Ahmedabad city police on June 15, 2004. Pic/PTI
Hitting back, Congress charged the BJP with spreading false propaganda merely to score political points and wondered if the Modi government was intervening in the case to block the prosecution of guilty policemen.
The trigger for the battle was the interview by R V S Mani, the then Under Secretary in the Home Ministry who had filed the two affidavits. During an interview, Mani alleged he was tortured to implicate senior IB officials in the case to project the encounter killing of Ishrat and other three LeT terrorists in Ahmedabad in 2004 as fake.
Mani suggested that Chidambaram was behind the decision to file the second affidavit.
He alleged that the then SIT chief, a CBI official, was after him and an attempt was made to question the quality of professional inputs by the intelligence agencies on Ishrat and other terrorists.
It also came on a day when two former home secretaries claimed the second affidavit was filed in the Supreme Court at the behest of the then Home Minister P Chidambaram.
The BJP yesterday alleged that the decision to change the affidavit in Ishrat Jehan encounter case was taken at the ‘political level’ involving the then Home Minister P Chidambaram, then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi, and asked Congress to come clean on it.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said the issue needs to be debated and discussed in the Parliament followed by appropriate action.