The release of convicts in the Bilkis Bano gang rape case, which dates back to 2002, has been released by the Gujarat government and has sparked a massive backlash against Centre and the Bhartiya Janta Party from opposition leaders.
Now, a BJP MLA from Gujarat has made a controversial statement regarding the case, seemingly defending the intentions of Bilkis Bano’s rapists, who walked out of jail on August 15 after over 15 years of imprisonment in the case.
Some convicts in the Bilkis Bano case of the 2002 Gujarat riots are “Brahmins” with good sanskaar (values) and may have been ‘fixed’ for their family activities, a BJP MLA, who was in the state government panel that recommended remission to all the 11 men found guilty, has said, as per ANI reports.
However, a day after making the claim on camera to news portal Mojo Story, Godhra MLA C K Raulji said he believes that rapists do not have any caste and those guilty should be punished.
Issuing a clarification on his controversial statement, Raulji tweeted, “Rapists do not belong to any caste, and I have not said anything like that. My statement is being shown in a wrong way. If someone is guilty he should get punished for it. We should respect court’s verdict.”
Earlier, the BJP MLA had said that he was not sure whether the convicts, released after spending more than 15 years in jail, were involved in the crime. Raulji was one of the members of the government-appointed panel who had decided on the approval of remission for all 11 convicts.
While speaking to a news portal, the BJP MLA had said, “We took the decision on the basis of a Supreme Court order. We were asked to look at their (convicts’) behaviour and decide (on their early release).”
On August 15, all the 11 convicts sentenced to life imprisonment in the 2002 case of Bilkis Bano’s gang rape and murder of her seven family members during the communal riots walked out of the Godhra sub-jail after the BJP government in Gujarat allowed their release under its remission policy.
(With ANI inputs)
READ | ‘Still no place to live, no job by government’: Bilkis Bano’s family on release of her rapists in Gujarat