BJP MLA from Ramgarh in Alwar district Gyandev Ahuja has stoked a fresh controversy with his remark that he had ‘no regrets over the death of Pehlu Khan’, a dairy farmer who was beaten to death allegedly by cow vigilantes in the district earlier this month.
“Kanoon humko haath mein nahi lena chahiye. Lekin uski maut hui. Uske liye humko koi afsosh nahi hai. Aur afsosh karoonga bhi nahi kyunki jo gau taskar hain, gau hatyare hain, aise paapiyon ka yehi harsh hota raha hai, hota rahega (We should not take law into our hands. But we have no regret over his death because those who are cow-smugglers are cow-killers, sinners like them have met this fate earlier and will continue to do so),” Ahuja told reporters outside the Rajasthan Assembly on Monday.
Targeting the opposition for raising the matter in the House, Ahuja said that Khan was a ‘cow smuggler’ and that the opposition ‘wanted to reward traitors and insult patriots’.
“They (Congress) are supporting cow-smugglers and killers,” he said.
On Monday, the first day of the special session of the Rajasthan Assembly, convened to pass the state GST Bill, witnessed uproar over the BJP MLA’s remarks, leading to the adjournment of the House twice.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Rajendra Rathore had to tender an apology to the House over the alleged remarks of the MLA.
Raising the issue of the deteriorating law and order situation in the state during the zero hour, the Congress demanded a reply from the Home Minister over the killing of Khan.
Leader of Opposition Rameshwar Dudi raised the issue of the Alwar killing and alleged that members of Bajrang Dal and the VHP were involved in the incident, drawing criticism from BJP MLAs.
Ahuja claimed that aid Khan died of shock while another MLA rejected allegation that any Bajrang Dal or VHP member was involved.
Intervening in the matter, state Home Minister Gulabchand Kataria said a smuggler has no religion.
He said that Khan did not have valid papers for transporting cows and when people were beaten up, the police took prompt action and hospitalised the injured, including Khan.
"An FIR against the accused was registered on charges of attempt to commit culpable homicide on the very first day of the incident which shows the concern of the government," he said.
He said when the FIR was registered, Khan was alive and that he died two days later.
The minister expressed grief and concern over rape cases and said that cases registered under the IPC have come down in the state.
Unsatisfied over the reply, the Congress members continued their protest. Amid the din, they demanded a CBI probe into the matter.
Despite Deputy Speaker Rao Rajendra Singhs assurance that the government will take appropriate action against the guilty, the Congress members stormed the well of the House, following which the deputy Speaker adjourned the proceedings for one hour.
On reassembling, the House functioned normally for some time and Industry Minister Rajpal Singh introduced the Rajasthan Goods and Services Tax Bill 2017.
When the debate on other bills was going on, Congress deputy whip Govind Singh Dotasara targeted BJP MLA Vijay Bansal for making derogatory remarks against BR Ambedkar which led to another uproar.
However, the comments were expunged from the House proceedings. Bansal in protest staged a walkout and Congress members trooped into the well of the House protesting his comments.
The Parliamentary Affairs Minister said that Bansal did not make any remark against Ambedkar and sought an apology if any of the MLAs comment hurt the members.
He said that Ambedkars contribution to the nation building cannot be forgotten.
Despite this, the Congress continued their protest and the deputy Speaker adjourned the House for another 15 minutes.
When the House assembled again, members debated and passed 13 bills by voice votes. This included 12 bills related to universities and the Rajasthan Bhamashah (Direct Transfer of Public Welfare Benefits and Delivery of Services) Bill. Three bills including the state GST Bill were also introduced in the House.
With PTI Inputs