Cong urges Guv to intervene in mosque-burning

| 18 December 2001 23:39 IST

While the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party is trying to downplay the incident of burning the mosque on the eve of Id in Goa, the Congress has alleged that same forces that demolished the Babri Masjid are behind the ugly incident.

Claiming that the law and order machinery in the state will do nothing in the case, state opposition leader Luizinho Faleiro has urged Governor Mohammed Fazal to personally intervene into the matter for a thorough probe.

Following assault on Goa-based union minister for state Shripad Naik by two Muslim boys on Sunday after their motorcycle hit his private car from behind while taking right turn at his residence, the incident of burning down a makeshift mosque and holy books of Koran had taken place the same night later.

Chief minister Manohar Parrikar, while assuring the minority community to get the damaged structure repaired at government cost, had dismissed any interlink between the two incidents. He has however ordered thorough probe into the background of the brothers who assaulted the union minister.

Faleiro however links it much further, recalling visit of Vishwa Hindu Parishad general secretary Pravin Togadia two days prior, where he had made provocative speeches in the state against the minorities, referring to the issue of attack on Parliament in Delhi.

He has also condemned the statement made by local BJP president Laxmikant Parsekar that the incident of assault on the union minister is a clear indication that non-Goan Muslims settled in Goa are becoming more and more aggressive day by day.

"The mindset of Muslim youth in Goa is undergoing a gradual change, being influenced by the large influx of aggressive non-Goans settled in the state", states Parsekar while urging the authorities to probe into their under-carpet activities.

"I will not comment about Parsekar’s statement unless I find out from him what actually he said", said the chief minister when journalists asked him whether it is a healthy statement, considering the communal harmony being practiced in the tiny tourist state.

In that case, said Faleiro, the non-Goan elements like VHP leader Togadia are also doing the same thing by instigating people against certain communities by making provocative speeches.

Though he does not make allegation against anybody in specific, the Congress leader charges that the same forces who had demolished Babri Masjid, attacked minorities all over India, raped nuns, murdered Stains and desecrated statue of Jesus Christ are behind the incident of burning down the Masjid and holy scripts of Koran.

Meanwhile, union minister Naik was discharged from the hospital and left for Delhi today. Irfan Aga, who was injured due to the revolver bullet fired by the minister’s bodyguard, is still in the hospital. His brother Aiays has however been remanded to two-day police custody.

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