The BJP has decided to "prepare" ace shooter Tara Shahdeo for the 2016 Summer Olympics, giving the highly-publicised 'love jihad' case a new twist in the poll-bound state.
Shahdeo, 23, shot into the limelight after accusing her husband – Ranjit Singh Kohli alias Raqibul Hassan – of torturing her to embrace Islam.
The incident has become increasingly political in nature with right-wing groups describing it as a case of 'love jihad', a term coined to describe an alleged conspiracy to convert Hindu girls to Islam through deceit.
Kohli, 37, and his 83-year-old mother were arrested from Delhi earlier this week.
The BJP's national vice-president Raghubar Das, who met Tara here on Sunday and handed over compensation of Rs 1 lakh, told Hindustan Times that the saffron party would take the responsibility of preparing Tara for the grandest international sporting event.
"We will bear the cost of coaching her and take the entire responsibility of preparing her for the Olympics," Das said.
The 2016 Olympics will be held in Brazil's capital Rio De Janeiro.
The Congress was quick to point out that the BJP move was an effort to politicise the incident and polarise voters ahead of the assembly polls.
Assembly elections in the state are due later this year and the Election Commission is expected to announce the dates very soon.
Congress state president Sukhdeo Bhagat said the BJP should not intervene in the matter and trust the government bodies that have been given the responsibility to investigate the matter.
"The chief minister has already asked for a CBI probe into the matter, the BJP's intervention in the issue is not good for democracy," Bhagat said, adding that preparing Tara for the Olympics or any other event is secondary and she should first be treated as a victim of domestic violence.
"The BJP wants to gain political mileage by announcing such irrelevant things prior to the assembly elections; this has to stop," he said.
Tara represented Jharkhand in the 34th National Games held in Ranchi, 2011. She had also participated in the GV Mavlankar National shooting competition and several other state-level shooting championships.
She has won at least five gold medals at the state level besides a gold medal in the 2009 Eastern Zone championship.