Lucknow: Muslim clerics on Tuesday condemned SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav`s statement that no riot-hit victim was left in Muzaffarnagar relief camps, saying the comments were "irresponsible" and the issue had been given a "political colour".
"The statement is politically motivated and he (Mulayam) wants to give this issue a political colour," general secretary of All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) Maulana Nizamuddin told a news agency over phone.
"Those living in camps are scared which is why they did not want to return to their homes. They did not have anything to do with politics. Had this been the case, they would not have been forced to leave their home. Such statements harm them," he said.
Shahi Imam, Delhi Jama Masjid Maulana Ahmad Bukhari said the statement was an "irresponsible" attempt to shun responsibility.
"I had sent one of my associates to the relief camp last Sunday. It is not true that there are no riot victims in the camps," Bukhari said.
Yadav had yesterday claimed, "There are no riot victims at all in the camps. There is not even one. You can check. These are people who are conspirators. BJP and Congress have conspired. They have asked people to stay there at night and sit in dharnas. This is conspiracy of the people there.”
"They (riot victims) have all gone. Congress and BJP are provoking them to rake up the issue till elections," Yadav had said.
Bukhari said it might be the case that one or two suspicious persons were living in the camps, but for that, the thousands living there should not be termed "conspirators".
Terming the statement as "highly irresponsible", All India Shia Personal Law Board spokesman Yasoob Abbas said if Yadav felt there were no riot victims living in the camps, he should inquire into the matter.
"Mulayam should constitute a committee to probe his charges. If really Congress and BJP conspirators are living in the relief camps, strict action should be initiated against them," he said.
Abbas said the government should try to take those living in the camps in confidence and not indulge in politics in this matter. "A number of people were killed in the riots. Elections come and go but those killed cannot be brought back," he said.