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Munda seeks truth in Tara case

Ranchi, Aug. 27: Senior BJP leader Arjun Munda today called for a smooth inquiry into the shocking allegations of faith crime and assault levelled by national-level shooter Tara Shahdeo against her husband and a speedy trial.

The former chief minister, who urged party workers to exercise restraint while expressing their anger against the alleged ill treatment meted out to Tara by Ranjit Singh Kohli, alias Rakibul Hassan, said the accused’s links with several high-profile politicians and bureaucrats, including those belonging to judiciary, ought to be brought to the fore.

“Kohli and his mother were arrested in Delhi. They landed in Ranchi in the evening. Tara’s submission against Kohli under Section 164 of the IPC, Kohli’s counter-allegations against Tara and her family and the public statements of certain ministers, in particular, contradict each other. Now it is the responsibility of the police to settle dust and find out the truth,” Munda told The Telegraph.

The BJP leader also had advice for party workers and members of various other organisations, who approached him to seek suggestions on what they ought to do when Kohli and his mother landed at the Birsa Munda Airport in Ranchi.

Urging them to restrain patience as the matter was sub-judice, Munda said: “Inciting social tension or causing unnecessary inconvenience to commoners is against our party ethos. It is true that Kohli may have got the opportunity to destroy evidences in the past few days. There are also reports of Sikh organisations claiming that he was never a follower of their faith. Still, we need to wait and watch,” he added.

Tara (23), a resident of Kishoregunj in the state capital, has accused her husband Kohli of hiding identity to marry her, forceful conversion bid and torture. She lodged an FIR with Hindpiri police against Kohli on August 19 after escaping from her husband’s now sealed Blair Apartments flat the same day.

The allegations caused a national stir with the Union home ministry yesterday seeking a report on the purported case of ‘love jihad’, a term coined by certain Hindu groups to describe sham marriages solemnised by people of minority communities to effect forceful conversions into Islam.

During interactions on other topics with the BJP members, Munda said that the final selection of candidates and distribution of tickets for the upcoming Vidhan Sabha elections would be done by the party high command. He, however, advised the workers to concentrate more on groundwork to ensure success of the official candidates.

“Most of you are elected representatives of different panchayati raj bodies. It is true that you have not yet been given your rightful power. But, who is stopping you from working out long-term strategies for growth in your respective field? Tomorrow, when you will be forming your own government in the state, your villages or municipal wards may not benefit much because you have not done your homework,” he advised a section of party members.

However, he only smiled mysteriously when a group from Santhal Pargana pleaded that giving a ticket to JMM defector Simon Marandi would be detrimental for the party.


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