More lynching incidents under earlier govts: Shah
After President Pranab Mukherjee raised the issue of lynchings in the country in the name of vigilantism, BJP chief Amit Shah has termed such incidents as "serious" but claimed more of these were reported under the previous governments than during three years of NDA rule.
He also insisted there was "no apprehension or fear" anywhere in the country in the aftermath of such incidents.
"I do not want to compare and undermine the current incidents of lynching. I am also serious about it. But there have been more lynching incidents in 2011, 2012 and 2013," Shah told a gathering of professionals in Goa on Saturday evening.
"There have been more lynchings each year in the past, compared to the total lynching incidents that have happened during our three-year-long tenure," the BJP leader said, without elaborating. The BJP-led government under Narendra Modi came to power at the Centre in May 2014.
"Do you know of any such incident where arrests have not been made? I do not have any answer to apprehensions. There is no apprehension anywhere in the country," he said, responding to a question about whether an environment of fear prevailed after mobs beat up people over alleged cow slaughter or beef consumption, often leading to their death.
Noting that law and order was a state subject, Shah said when Mohammad Akhlaq was beaten to death at Dadri in Uttar Pradesh in September 2015 over suspicion of storing and consuming beef, the state had a Samajwadi Party government and it was its responsibility to prevent the incident.
Reacting sharply to Shah's accusation, the Congress party whose government preceded Modi's, alleged these incidents had "tacit protection and support" of the BJP dispensation.