Digvijay presents records of Karkare phone call, demands apology

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

NEW DELHI - Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh Tuesday released records of his phone call to Hemant Karkare and demanded a public apology from those doubting he had made the call to the slain anti-terror squad chief a few hours before the 26/11 attacks.

He also demanded an apology from Maharashtra Home Minsiter R.R. Patil for his remarks in the state assembly that records of the conversation were not available with state police.

In a letter to Patil, copies of which were released to the media here, the Congress leader said that statements similar to those made by the minister had been made by Mumbai Police. He said the statements led to the media trying to prove his statement about the conversation with Karkare as wrong.

“If you and Mumbai police had sought details about the ATS number (022-23087366), which is available on its website, then probably you would not have made the statement,” Singh said, and appended records from the mobile phone number belonging to Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee on which he had talked.

“Your and Mumbai Police statements have caused me deep hurt. I call upon you to make a public apology or regret,” Singh said in the letter.

Addressing mediapersons, the Congress general secretary also sought an apology from all those who “termed him a liar and questioned his integrity”.

The Congress leader had last month triggered a controversy when said he had spoken to Karkare Nov 26, 2008, hours before he was killed in the Mumbai terror attack. According to Singh, Karkare said he had been receiving threat calls because he had implicated some activists of right-wing Hindu groups in the Malegaon blast case.

“I never met Karkare, but I congratulated him when the Malegaon blast accused were held because they were the people I had known to be involved in such activities as Madhya Pradesh chief minister,” Digvijay Singh added.

Karkare was heading the probe into the Sep 29, 2008 Malegaon blast for which three members of a right-wing Hindu group have been arrested.

The Congress general secretary made it clear that he did not suggest that Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh cadres were involved in the 26/11 attack.

“I don’t subscribe to the view that RSS or right-wing people are involved in 26/11. I see no such conspiracy in 26/11; only Pakistani terrorists were involved and this has been my stand all along,” he insisted.

He said all terror related incidents, whether involving people from the majority or minority community, should be looked into by the National Investigating Agency.

Seeking a central agency probe into the murder of RSS worker Sunil Joshi in Madhya Pradesh, Singh said he had no faith in the probe under the BJP government in the state.

Singh said Swami Aseemanand, who has been arrested in connection with Mecca Masjid blast in Hyderabad, worked in Banwasi Kalyan Ashram which has RSS links.

He said the chargesheet in the Malegaon blast case mentions that the conspiracy was hatched in the Shabri kumbh in Dang district in Gujarat. He said that RSS leaders K.S. Sudershan and Mohan Bhagwat and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi had attended the Shabri kumbh function.

Attacking the BJP, he said its leaders “feel pained” if people with RSS background are arrested or questioned for terror charges.

“Why does BJP have sympathy for RSS leader Indresh Kumar (who was questioned by CBI on the Mecca Masjid blast). Is BJP showing patriotism by coming in defence of such people?” he said.

Singh said no patriotic Indian should have any sympathy with a terrorist whether belonging to majority or minority community.

Filed under: Politics

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