Union minister Jayant Sinha garlands eight Ramgarh lynching convicts; Hemant Soren calls it 'despicable'

The pictures, which have gone viral, show Union minister Jayant Sinha welcoming the eight men at his residence on the outskirts of Hazaribagh.

FP Staff July 07, 2018 11:17:40 IST
Union minister Jayant Sinha garlands eight Ramgarh lynching convicts; Hemant Soren calls it 'despicable'

Union minister Jayant Sinha has sparked a political row by felicitating eight men convicted in the Ramgarh lynching case. Photographs of the event, believed to have been organised on Friday, have gone viral. They show the minister welcoming the eight men at his house on the outskirts of Hazaribagh and even garlanding some of them, according to NDTV.

Union minister Jayant Sinha garlands eight Ramgarh lynching convicts Hemant Soren calls it despicable

A mob had lynched Alimuddin Ansari in Ramgarh on 29 June, 2017, on the suspicion that he was carrying beef in his car. A lower court had convicted them in the case, but the Jharkhand High Court had later granted them bail.

The news comes at a time when the Supreme Court is hearing petitions seeking directions to frame guidelines to curb such violence. On Tuesday, the top court said it was the responsibility of states to check cow vigilantism and reserved its verdict on the pleas.

Sinha drew criticism after the photographs were widely shared on social media. Former Jharkhand chief minister and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha leader Hemant Soren told News18 that it was a very sensitive issue, and Sinha's actions were unbecoming of a Union minister.

He also tweeted:

Jharkhand state Congress chief Ajoy Kumar, while talking to News18, accused BJP of fanning communal sentiments. "Any kind of support to such elements is deplorable. This is the true color of the BJP. They just want to win the elections, and for that, their leaders can cross any limit," he was quoted as saying in the report. On Saturday, Sinha took to Twitter to explain his stand:

In May, Sinha had called for an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation into the matter and said that the accused in the Ramgarh lynching case have not got "complete justice", according to The Indian Express.

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