New Delhi, July 20 (IANS) The Opposition walked out of the Rajya Sabha on Thursday after Union Minister Prakash Javadekar accused it of suffering from “selective amnesia” on lynching cases.
A visibly angry Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad hit back by saying that notwithstanding who was in power, the “Parivaar” (a reference to the Sangh family or Hindutva groups) people were found involved in every communal riot in the country.
“When I condemn mob lynching, I do not suffer from selective amnesia like some of our Opposition colleagues,” Javadekar said as he mentioned the 1984 anti-Sikh riots and the killing of ‘karsevaks’ in Godhra in Gujarat in 2002.
“In 1984, Sikhs were lynched or burnt alive, at least 3,000 of them. In 2002, Ram bhakts returning from Ayodhya were lynched in Godhra. We condemn all such incidents,” the Human Resource Development Minister said.
He said there were 16 mob lynchings in 2012 and 14 in 2013.
“Where are the culprits involved in the lynchings in 2012 and 2013? Where are the culprits involved in anti-Sikh riots of 1984?… Very few of them are in jail, rest are roaming free,” he said.
In response, Azad, a senior Congress leader, stood up and retorted: “Let me say that in all the communal riots that occurred in India, people from your ‘parivaar’ were found involved.”
He said it was the Congress that fought for the country’s freedom and “not you people”.
“We are staging a walkout in protest,” the former Union Minister said.