Lucknow, June 29 (IANS) Former Union Law Minister Salman Khursheed on Friday expressed his anguish at growing cases of sexual assaults and crimes against women and girls across the country.
In a tweet, the senior Congress leaders said the incidents in Unnao, Kathua and a recent one in Lucknow were painful and heart wrenching.
Talking to IANS, Khursheed said the issue came to him in a casual discussion but it somehow “stirred up the emotions within”.
He, however, clarified that the tweet was not entirely a comment on the state government and the law and order in the state of Uttar Pradesh but rather an “honest and impromptu commentary on the way our society is headed”.
“I felt a lot of pain, it brought in sadness,” he added while pointing out that the government cannot absolve itself of the responsibility of protecting its people.
“I have always had a special connect with Lucknow … it’s a gracious and a noble city… Growing crimes, however, reflect how things have changed and that too for bad,” the former Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee (UPCC) chief said.
In his tweet on Thursday, Khursheed had written: “I lost my daughter decades ago. Today I feel I have lost her again and again. Personal pain was turned into national agony from Kathua, Unnao et al, now to Lucknow. Graceful city turns to disgrace. A nation that betrays its children is sad.”
While many people retweeted his tweet in support, many trolled him for linking the death of his daughter to the recent crimes against girls and women. Some said he was using the issue for political point scoring.
Reacting to this, Khursheed told IANS that “social media had its own problems like these”. “I wrote the tweet because I felt sad and it must be noted that people who find politics in something are also doing politics!”
A 21-year-old girl from Ballia, Sanskriti Rai, studying in Polytechnic at Lucknow was found assaulted and dumped near IIM-Lucknow 10 days back. She was hit by a blunt object on the forehead. The girl died later.
She was said to be going to her parents’ place with friends and had left from her rented accommodation in Indiranagar for Badshahnagar Railway Station, but never reached there. Her mobile went off after some time and her uncle. She was later found dumped on the IIM road, her mobile and bag missing.
The autopsy report has ruled out rape. Her friends have started a social media hashtag campaign for justice to Sanskriti and to put pressure on the police to nab the miscreants. The Congress leader apparently came across this campaign and reacted spontaneously.
A senior police official told IANS that more than 100 persons have been interrogated so far and CCTV footage of the area where she lived is being studied. In some CCTV grabs, she is seen leaving alone with a bag.
“We hope to crack the case soon,” an official said. Leaders of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) have also met city police officials demanding that the case be solved at the earliest.