NEW DELHI: Amid unprecedented scale of lawlessness seen in Haryana after conviction of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh in a rape case, the BJP has thrown its weight behind the state chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar. It has emerged that the Centre had not just been in the loop, but closely coordinated strategy to deal with situations arising out of the court verdict with the state.
The Haryana chief minister, who had always been on the edge in the state politics with crisis after crisis testing his administrative acumen, appears “safe”. The saffron outfit is seemingly not mulling at replacing him in immediate future. Sources in the BJP claimed that the top brass of the party had well been aware of the consequences of the conviction of the sect leader who commands strong following in many districts of Haryana.
“Intelligence inputs were available much in advance of the widespread violence in the event of conviction of Gurmeet Ram Rahim. There were two options before the government. First option was to take him into preventive custody and secondly the administration had to swoop down swiftly to tame the violence if he got convicted. During discussions, it emerged that the preventive custody could have sparked off instant riots and the administration would have failed to bring him to the court. Therefore, the Centre and state chose the second option,” sources said.
Scoffing the speculations of Khattar having been summoned to the national capital, a top BJP leader dismissed it, saying there is no such move. The BJP national general secretary and party in-charge for Haryana Anil Jain said, the administration tamed the fallout of the conviction within three hours and minimised the violence.
Another senior BJP leader sought to suggest that there had been no lapses on the part of the administrations to deal with the situations arising out of the conviction of the Dera head.
Khattar is Known to be close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi since days of both being RSS Pracharaks. But as a chief minister, he has literally been on the edge of a sword. Besides faction fighting withing the party, political observers note that Jat agitation and post-conviction violence have shown his administrative skills in poor light.