Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC) on Wednesday accused BJP of “twisting facts” and trying to hide behind “security threat” over the alleged presence of LeT terrorist Talib Hussain Shah in its ranks.
The Congress said the NIA probe, as demanded by the saffron party into the case, must also investigate the BJP leader’s connection with the dreaded terrorist, security lapse over the terrorist’s presence in home minister’s meeting and the failure of security agencies to detect his presence in the BJP for years together.
Alleging that the recently arrested LeT terrorist was part of a “new terror plan” to target the party and its leaders in Jammu and Kashmir, BJP on Tuesday demanded a probe into the matter by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
Shah along with his associate Faisal Ahmad Dar were overpowered by the villagers of remote Tukson Dhok in Reasi district early Sunday and later handed over to police. Two AK assault rifles, a pistol, seven grenades and a large quantity of ammunition were recovered from them.
Some pictures emerged on social media purportedly showing Shah with BJP leaders. One of the pictures shows J&K BJP president Ravinder Raina purportedly presenting him with a bouquet and a letter issued by party leader Sheikh Bashir on May 9, assigning him the responsibility of new IT and social media incharge of Minority Morcha (Jammu province).
Reacting sharply to the BJP statement to distance itself from Shah and its demand for a NIA probe, Congress said it is “failed attempt” to escape the responsibility and demanded that NIA should also investigate the BJP leaders connection with the dreaded terrorist.
“This is an attempt by BJP to hide facts and divert attention to escape responsibility for appointing a dreaded militant in the ranks of the party, besides facilitating him to several important meetings with top leaders and functionaries in the government, especially the Home Minister. BJP cannot take U-turn now and say that he was not associated with the party,” JKPCC leaders led by working president Raman Bhalla said in a joint statement here.
The Congress questioned BJP leaders attempt to hide behind “security threat” and said when BJP leaders are themselves responsible for the LeT terrorists induction into the party and facilitating his presence at important events like home ministers meeting.
“It is surprising for the nation that such a dreaded terrorist could meet the Home Minister which is a grave security breach. The heads should roll and all those responsible for playing a dirty or irresponsible role should be booked under law,” the statement said.
It said NIA and other agencies should also investigate the “sheer lapses” in the security of the Home Minister and all others by virtue of the LeT terrorist’s position in the BJP.
“It should be also investigated that how such a terrorist escaped the eyes of intelligences agencies for years together and became an active leader of BJP and met top functionaries,” the statement said.
The Congress said the BJP leaders cannot escape the responsibility by their “repeated attempts to divert and twist facts” in the wake of a series of evidences.
The JKPCC sought screening of the ranks of BJP to know “how many such elements have become members by the process of miss call enrolment, especially in the militancy infested Jammu and Kashmir.”
(With PTI inputs)