Cong supports Rita Bahuguna Joshi`s demand for CBI probe
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Last Updated: Sunday, July 19, 2009, 17:45
New Delhi: Though the Congress has distanced itself from the controversial remarks made by UPCC chief Rita Bahuguna Joshi, it stood by her on Sunday in demanding a CBI inquiry into the torching of her house, saying state police could not be trusted in the matter.

Congress general secretary in-charge of Uttar Pradesh Digvijay Singh demanded a CBI probe into the torching of Joshi's house in Lucknow on the night of July 15.

"UP police were there when BSP workers were torching Rita's house. Therefore, I don't expect them to be fair. Till the time the state government doesn't recommend a CBI inquiry into the incident, Congress workers will demand it at every police station of the state," he told reporters here.

Joshi, who met Singh today, said she has emerged stronger after being jailed, but made it clear that her alleged derogatory remarks against UP Chief Minister were "not intentional".

Joshi will be meeting Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday.

Reacting to the CBCID probe ordered by the state government, the Uttar Pradesh unit of Congress said it was a mere eyewash to give clean-chit to BSP workers and the party would continue to press its demand for a CBI probe to expose those involved in the arson.

"The inquiry by the CBCID is an eyewash. How can a state agency, which works under pressure of the government justify the probe and nail workers of the ruling BSP?" Congress spokesman Akhilesh Pratap Singh said.

The Mayawati government in UP has ordered a CB-CID probe into the incident in which two BSP leaders have already been arrested.

Joshi, who is out on interim bail till July 29, had said that state police could not be trusted to conduct an impartial inquiry and the case should be handed over to CBI.

Joshi was arrested on July 15 after she made derogatory remarks against Mayawati for not doing enough for rape victims. Some miscreants, allegedly led by some BSP leaders, torched her house in Lucknow on the same night and also burned down some vehicles.

Singh also took a dig at Mayawati, saying her comments against Rahul Gandhi yesterday were nothing new as she has been consistently attacking him on issues of Dalit empowerment.

"She has not attacked Rahulji for the first time. She has been consistently attacking Rahulji on issues of dalit empowerment and his attention towards dalit issues," Singh said.

While touring his constituency Amethi, Gandhi had accused the Mayawati government of being inactive and "non-operational".

Mayawati accused the UPA government of being responsible for the state's dismal power supply situation and demanded release of a "white paper" on the issue.

Bureau Report

First Published: Sunday, July 19, 2009, 17:45

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