Home / Politics / Policy /  Bhopal jailbreak: Opposition, BJP lock horns over SIMI activists’ encounter

New Delhi: Congress and other opposition parties on Monday demanded a judicial probe into the killing of 8 SIMI terrorists in an encounter near Bhopal after a jailbreak, while BJP accused them of undermining the morale of security forces by raising questions over its authenticity.

Congress and CPI-M sought a judicial probe so people get to know the truth, but the BJP accused the Congress of coming in support of SIMI activists and politicizing the incident.

“I am demanding a judicial probe because even the government must know under what circumstances they (terrorists) escaped. People of the state and country must know how terrorists with such a record were able to escape from such a high security jail and within hours caught and shot dead," Congress leader Kamal Nath, a Lok Sabha MP from Madhya Pradesh, said.

His party colleague Manish Tewari, however, said he would comment on the issue after more details are received since the situation is still evolving. “It is an evolving situation. Let the police come out with further details as to what happened. We will await for the details. It’s much better to wait for more details," he said.

Coming out in defence of the police action, BJP spokesperson GVL Narasimha Rao accused the Congress of batting for terrorists belonging to SIMI the way it had done for Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) in the past. He alleged leaders of the Congress were undermining the morale of the security forces.

“Congress, like they questioned the cross-LoC surgical strike, they are doing the same again for vote bank politics. They are undermining the morale of our security forces," he said. “I don’t think why Congress wants to speak up for such individuals. Politicizing the encounter is certainly not a done thing. But Congress party has done this for a long time. Looking at the way Congress is politicizing the encounter, and that too concerning the particular group or organization, is a matter of concern. Congress seems to raise concern only when LeT terrorists are killed and when SIMI activists who are convicted and involved in the jailbreak. Congress party springing to their defence raises curiosity," he said.

CPI-M’s Brinda Karat termed the official version of the incident as “highly dubious and suspicious". She said the versions of state government and police were “contradictory". “Therefore, to get to the truth, it is essential to have an independent probe under a high court judge and should be time-bound because nobody can believe what seems to be a highly manufactured version," she said. Karat said those killed were undertrials and dubbing them as terrorists amounted to “subverting the law".

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