If Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Varun Gandhi did not behave and indulged in any more hate speeches after his release on parole, he would be dealt with more severely, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati said in Lucknow on Thursday.
"We may have to use more stringent laws if Varun Gandhi violates the terms of the affidavit that he has sworn before the Supreme Court following which he was granted repreive," Mayawati told a hurriedly convened press conference.
Varun Gandhi, BJP nominee for the Pilibhit seat, was arrested from Pilibhit town March 28 for hate speeches against the minority community and the stringent National Security Act (NSA) was invoked in his case the next day.
He was released from Etah jail Thursday evening as the Supreme Court granted him two-week parole for filing nomination papers for the Lok Sabha polls and campaigning.
Mayawati said, "We had opposed Varun Gandhi's parole tooth and nail, but the Supreme Court decided to grant him parole, so we have to abide by it."
"Varun Gandhi's assurance in the form of an affidavit could hardly be relied upon. After all, former Uttar pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh too swore on a similar affidavit giving an explicit undertaking to the Supremne Court that he would protect the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya, but eventually the mosque was demolished (in 1992). Varun Gandhi also belongs to the same BJP."
Justifying her government's decision to slap the NSA on Varun Gandhi, she said, "Varun Gandhi had caused serious disturbance to the public order and his utterances were clearly aimed at inciting communal disharmony that deserved to be tackled with an iron hand anmd we did it."
"Our stand has always been very clear that anyone - no matter how high and mighty - would not be spared if he indulged in violating the law. Varun Gandhi could not have been allowed to go scot-free simply because he belonged to the Gandhi family."