Hubballi murder: 'Not love jihad, were in relationship’, says Home Minister; girl’s dad, BJP hit back

The murder of Congress corporator’s daughter Neha Hiremath in Hubballi has triggered a political slugfest in the state.
A large number of students gather in front of BVB college, demanding justice for Neha Hiremath, in Hubballi on Friday
A large number of students gather in front of BVB college, demanding justice for Neha Hiremath, in Hubballi on Friday | D Hemanth

HUBBALLI/BENGALURU: The murder of Congress corporator’s daughter Neha Hiremath in Hubballi has triggered a political slugfest in the state.

The girl’s father and BJP leaders on Friday slammed Home Minister G Parameshwara for stating that it is not a case of “love jihad” and that the victim and the accused were in a relationship.

Neha Hiremath, daughter of Niranjan Hiremath, the Congress corporator, was hacked to death by her former classmate Fayaz on the BV Bhoomaraddi College campus in Hubballi on Thursday.

“It is not a case of ‘love jihad’. According to the information I have, the boy and the girl were in a mutual relationship. He might have stabbed her after coming to know that she was to marry someone else,” the home minister told reporters in Tumakuru.

Probe love jihad angle: Neha’s father

The police have arrested the accused and legal action will be taken against him, he said and added that it has become a habit for BJP leaders to blame the government for each and every issue.

Meanwhile, Niranjan Hiremath urged the police to investigate the “love jihad” angle as well. “I demand everyone to get justice for my little daughter. I have asked the police to investigate the ‘love jihad’ angle as well. I have asked BJP leaders to help me get justice. I will not rest until the accused is hanged. Such incidents should not happen,” he said.

CM Siddaramaiah, who held a meeting with the state police chief Alok Mohan and Bengaluru City Police Commissioner B Dayanand, said, “Any murder happens for personal reasons. The government’s duty is to maintain law and order, and our government is doing it.”

Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar said regardless of the government, such incidents happen for personal reasons. But the state’s law and order has not deteriorated.

BJP leaders accused Siddaramaiah and his ministers of making irresponsible statements on the girl’s murder.

Union minister Pralhad Joshi came down heavily on the state government and said it is supporting one community just for its votes. “Is this not a ‘love jihad’ case? This is such a shame. The girl’s father is a Congress corporator who himself says it is a ‘love jihad’ case. But Congress leaders are speaking very low,” said Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly R Ashoka. He accused the Congress government of giving “passports” to those who indulge in ‘love jihad’.

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