Opposition fanned north-east Delhi riots, says AAP; BJP hits back
A day after accusing the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of scripting the Shaheen Bagh protests, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Tuesday said leaders from the opposition party provoked people from both Hindu and Muslim communities and delivered hate speeches, which led to the communal violence in north-east Delhi in February that claimed 53 lives.
“Several senior leaders of the BJP openly delivered provocative speeches that led to a toxic atmosphere and ultimately caused communal violence in north-east Delhi in February. The BJP is scared of getting exposed now and that is why the central government did not let public prosecutors of the Delhi government argue on riot-related cases and instead appointed their own lawyers,” AAP spokesperson Saurabh Bharadwaj said in a press conference at the party head office in central Delhi.
He said, “Several leaders of the BJP were creating tension among Hindus on the one hand, and, on the other, they were provoking Muslims protesting (against the amended citizenship law) in Shaheen Bagh. The BJP’s role stands exposed now after around 50 individuals of Shaheen Bagh associated with the protest recently joined the party. All these individuals should be probed – what roles they had in the protests, who they took instructions from and who were the top BJP leaders they were in touch with.”
On Monday, Bharadwaj had alleged that the Shaheen Bagh protests were “pre-planned, scripted and strategised” by the BJP to win more seats in the February 8 Delhi Assembly elections. His remarks came after the BJP announcing on Sunday that around 50 Muslim residents of Shaheen Bagh had joined the party.
Reacting to AAP’s latest charges, Delhi BJP chief Adesh Gupta said, “They are making an issue out of nothing. They are doing this as they fear of losing their support base of the Muslim community, which has come out in support of the BJP.”