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Cow vigilantism, hate crimes show Rajasthan in bad light: Vasundhara Raje

Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje promises firm action against those behind violence in the state.

jaipur Updated: Jun 14, 2017 10:00 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India, Jaipur
Cow vigilantism,Hate crime,Rajasthan
Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje.(Himanshu Vyas/HT File Photo)

Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje has admitted that recent crimes, including those by cow vigilantes, against minorities in the state show Rajasthan in a bad light, but stressed that firm action will be taken against those behind the violence.

“The law of the land prevails in Rajasthan, and the government will ensure the culprits are brought to book,” she said.

In April, ‘gau rakshaks’ (cow vigilantes) brutally thrashed five cattle traders in Alwar leading to the death of one, 55- year-old Pehlu Khan, in a hospital days later.

Recently, the desert state hit the headlines again when a video -- showing Sikh men allegedly being thrashed by villagers in Ajmer -- surfaced.

“Rajasthan cannot be singled out. Such incidents are happening across India. But this government will not tolerate such crimes as it shows the state in a bad light,” Raje told PTI.

She said the administration acted “swiftly” and the perpetrators were arrested in the Pehlu Khan case.

The chief minister, who is due to complete her term next year, said, “We do not discriminate among people on any lines. In less than a week, the accused in the honour killing of a Kerala engineer were arrested and an inquiry was also ordered into the Ajmer incident.”

In a suspected case of honour killing, 28-year-old Amit Nair, a civil engineer, was shot dead last week allegedly by his in-laws here for marrying a Rajasthani woman.

“Though our government did its part, the Kerala government is yet to speak out on the killings of BJP and RSS workers,” said Raje.

The CM said she planned to make development her party’s poll plank for the state Assembly elections.

The Centre and the state were actively working for the people, she said, adding that the ruling BJP was “an active organisation”. The state had seen a “rapid” growth in every sector in the last four years, she said.

“These factors will be crucial in ensuring our victory in the polls,” Raje said, adding that the BJP government had “inherited discoms crippled by debts running into crores of rupees from the erstwhile Congress government.”

Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje lays foundation stone for underpass at SMS hospital in Jaipur. ( PTI Photo )

Bailing them out to put the crucial sector back on track was a “massive and uphill task”, she said.

Citing an example of the coordination between the Centre and the state, Raje said, “Rajasthan’s road network by 2018 will be of 30,000 km. The state has already constructed 21,000 km of roads since the BJP formed the government in the state.”

Apart from its plans to highlight investments in industry and agriculture, the Raje government will heavily bank its poll campaigns on schemes such as the Mukhya Mantri Jal Swavlamban Abhiyan (MJSA), the Nyay Aapke Dwar (legal camps), the Bhamashah Yojana and irrigation schemes.

“These are our flagship programmes. The MJSA is decreasing the dependency on canals and rivers, thus reducing the financial burden on the state,” she said.

On the AAP looking to make its debut in the Rajasthan polls, Raje said, “I welcome them. This is a democracy.”

First Published: May 30, 2017 17:24 IST