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Blast before ballot stirs Karnataka

Blast before ballot stirs Karnataka
BJP has criticised the comments made by Shakeel Ahmad, while Congress has distanced itself from Shakeel Ahmad’s tweet, saying that the party had nothing to do with it and it was his personal view.

BJP president Rajnath Singh refused to react to Congress leader Shakeel Ahmed's contention that the blast would help the right-wing party in the forthcoming Assembly elections in Karnataka. 'I don't believe this has been stage-managed by somebody. Acts of terror are taking place across the country. It is a ground reality that there are several sleeper modules, which are playing their roles in different places. Government is not making any effort to destroy these sleeper cells,' said Singh.

'I talked to Karnataka chief minister Jagadish Shettar. We are taking stock of the situation,' Rajnath Singh said. 'Any terror incident is a matter of concern and should not be seen as political gain,' Congress general secretary Janardhan Dwivedi said on Wednesday, shortly after his colleague Shakeel Ahmad kicked up a storm with his remark that the blast near the BJP’s office in Bangalore would help the party in the Karnataka polls. ‘Any terror incident is a matter of concern... it is a national and international problem... it is a challenge for the country... it should not be seen as political gain,' Dwivedi told reporters after the blast in Bangalore, in which 16 people were injured.

Earlier in the day, Ahmad said on Twitter: 'If the blast near BJP's office in Bangalore is a terror attack, it will certainly help the BJP politically on the eve of election.' The state assembly elections are to be held on 5 May.

'I have not seen his tweet. What he said is his personal view and the party has nothing to do with it,' added Minister of State for Home R.P.N. Singh.

Ahmad's remarks were criticised by the BJP as unwarranted and uncalled for.

'Such remarks are uncalled for and should not have come from a senior Congress leader. The party (Congress) has already accepted defeat in Karnataka,' added BJP spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi.

'There should be no politics on such incidents,' BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain added. Condemning Ahmad's remarks, BJP president Rajnath Singh said: 'Terrorism should not be seen as a political loss or gain.' Stating that the incident was 'unfortunate and condemnable', he said party leaders were taking stock of the situation.


MHA SENDS NIA TEAM TO ASSIST BANGALORE POLICE

The Home Ministry today rushed a National Investigative Agency (NIA) team to the Bangalore blast site and offered all help to the Karnataka government in its investigation. 'A team of NIA is reaching the Bangalore blast site. We are in constant touch with the Karnataka government and ready to offer any help which is required,' Minister of State for Home RPN Singh told reporters here. Singh said the nature of the blast and the materials used to carry out the explosion were not so far clear and investigators were looking into all possibilities as nothing can be ruled out.

The Minister appealed  everyone to maintain peace and not to indulge in rumour mongering. 'We appeal to everyone that peace should be maintained. Please do not indulge in rumour mongering,' he said.
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