New Delhi: India's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Sunday demanded the sacking of Jammu and Kashmir Congress chief Ghulam Ahmad Mir, claiming that he was seen in a video terming the police probe in the Kathua rape-and-murder case motivated and defending the public protests against it.
Citing the BJP's decision to remove two of its Jammu and Kashmir ministers, who had joined the public protests against the probe, Union minister Prakash Javadekar wondered if Congress president Rahul Gandhi would only point fingers at others but maintain silence on the comments of his party's Jammu and Kashmir unit chief.
In the video, which was played during a press conference at the BJP headquarters here, Mir is purportedly telling reporters that the locals believed the investigation was motivated and that the main culprits were still at large.
Questions would be raised and there must be some justification in the people's demand, Mir said, wondering if the probe was aimed at making some political points.
"When our ministers expressed these sentiments, the Congress, the media made a lot of noise. We took action.
They resigned. Now we want to ask Rahul Gandhi, who took out a candlelight march (protesting the growing incidents of crime against women in the country), why is he not taking action against his party's state president, Javadekar said.
Pointing fingers at others while protecting its own was the character of the Congress party, he alleged.
The authenticity of the video could not be independently verified.
The BJP had faced flak after its leaders in the Jammu region, including two ministers in the Mehbooba Mufti government, joined the public protests against the police probe into the brutal rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl from the nomadic Bakarwal Muslim community that had led to the arrest of eight persons.
The two ministers -- Lal Singh and Chander Prakash Ganga -- resigned on Friday, soon after Prime Minister Narendra Modi said these incidents, including a rape case in which a BJP MLA from Unnao district of Uttar Pradesh is the accused, had shamed the country and that justice would be ensured in all the cases.