After BJP, Congress faces music over Kathua incident

Kathua rape and murder BJP sends resignations of its two ministers to Mehbooba Mufti

BJP National General Secretary Ram Madhav at a press conference in Jammu on Saturday | IANS

Two BJP Ministers have quit the Mehbooba Mufti-led coalition Jammu & Kashmir after they were directed by the party high-command to put in their papers for taking part in a rally supportive of the accused persons.

Madhav told the BJP leaders that while the party wouldn't compromise on its core agenda of securing the "interests of Hindus" of Jammu, it "can't afford to be seen in coalition with the government which was influenced by bias of Muslims".

Shashi Singh, who allegedly took the victim to Sengar on the day of the crime, has been remanded to police custody till April 19. Both the ministers had earlier said that they had been sent by the party to Kathua to understand the ground situation. Mir added that Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti had expressed her displeasure with the BJP over the "conduct of two ministers". The first FIR pertains to the alleged rape of the girl in which Kuldeep Sengar and Shashi Singh have been named as accused. "What Madhav ji said in the press conference, that is all".

In a statement issued to KNS, Hakeem Yaseen has said that unholy alliance between PDP-BJP has proved much costlier to the people of the state as they get no time to look into the grievances of the people except tackling internal bickering to save their chair. "Yes, there was some indiscretion but they never tried to hamper the investigation". He had added, "Yes, there has been indiscretion and it is for this that they made a decision to step down". With these resignations, the number of ministers in the state government has come down to 22, including nine from the BJP.

"We have not been able to contact him since Thursday", he said.

"On March 1, a huge crowd gathered in Kathua and our ministers went there to pacify them". "That is also a confidence-building measure".

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"There is no trouble in the BJP-PDP alliance". "There is a strong possibility that the party could take back Singh and Ganga in the state cabinet, but a lobby is also seeking that their performance has not been satisfactory". Ganga has asserted that he chose to quit to "save the image" of Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, whose name was also being dragged amid the outrage against the rape and murder incident.

The girl had disappeared from a spot near her house close to Rasana village on January 10.

Her attackers, which included temple official and policemen, drugged and gang-raped her over days before finally killing her and dumping her body in a forest nearby, seven days later. Then it was given to Crime Branch and two more people were picked up. A police Sub-Inspector and a Head-Constable too have been arrested on charges of destroying evidence.

The Indian national flag was waved at the rally where Ganga and Singh supported the demand for a CBI inquiry and warned the police to not make any further arrests. He added, "The BJP wants justice for the victim and there are no two opinions on that".

"It (case) was given to local police".

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