HYDERABAD: Monday's verdict led to a political slugfest -- from New Delhi to Hyderabad. The BJP sought an apology from the Congress for coining the term 'saffron terror' while the grand old party urged the Centre to come clean on issues. Back home, MIM said the NIA probe was biased and alleged the course of investigation changed after 2014 -- when BJP came to power at the Centre.
"Congress president Rahul Gandhi and Soni Gandhi must apologise for seeking to tarnish Hindu religion by coining the saffron terror term," alleged BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra. In response, Congress spokesperson PL Punia said, "Our party believes terror has no religion and must be dealt with strongly."
In the same breath, the Congress also noted that the NIA court had acquitted all the accused due to lack of evidence and pointed out that the court had last month wondered how the confession of the accused went missing suddenly. The Congress also recalled how a government counsel in the case had earlier said she was under pressure to go soft on the accused and urged the centre to come clean on these issues as well. "We have to see what steps the government takes," said Punia.
The strongest reaction, however, came from MIM president and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi who said the investigation agency did not pursue the case properly. "Most of the witnesses turned hostile after June 2014 and the NIA either didn’t pursue the case as was expected or was not allowed by its political masters to do so. Justice hasn’t been done in the case,” Owaisi said adding questions would be raised over the criminal justice system (of the country) if such biased prosecutions continue. The ruling TRS, however, choose not to react to the acquittal of the five accused.