Congress targets BJP again over 2002 riots

After the Delhi Police claim that Lashkar-e-Toiba men scouted for recruits at Muzaffarnagar relief camps, the Congress argued that Rahul Gandhi was right and on Wednesday the party went on the offensive against the BJP which had criticised the Congress vice president after his remarks in October.

Congress general secretary Shakeel Ahmed said the BJP twisted Rahul's remarks for political gain and went on to add that the BJP leverages riots to garner votes.

"I have always argued that whenever communal riots, especially between Hindus and Muslims, break out anywhere in India, two kinds of people rejoice India's BJP and Pakistan's ISI...," he said.

Ahmed's remarks triggered an angry reaction from the BJP which raked up the anti-Sikh riots of 1984.

"During 1984 anti-Sikh riots... BJP protested & the Congress 'rejoiced' (?)! Any reconsideration now? In the Valley's ethnic cleansing of Kashmiri Pandits the ISI 'rejoiced', the BJP protested and the Congress was helpless," BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman tweeted.

Ahmed, addressing the media, argued there was a difference between the 1984 riots and the 2002 Gujarat riots. He said while every government is responsible for protecting lives and properties of people, the Gujarat issue was different as the "person who had the responsibility (of protecting the lives and properties) monitored and presided over (the riots)." Compared to that, Rajiv Gandhi was on streets of Delhi to control the riots after his mother's assassination.

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