Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi has come down heavily on the National Investigative Agency (NIA) over the acquittal of five accused in the Mecca Masjid blast case. Owaisi, who heads the Hyderabad-based All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, said that the investigative agency has turned “deaf and blind” in the case. The Hyderabad MP further assured help to the family of victims.
“If the family of any victim wants to appeal against the verdict, then I am ready to provide them legal help. People call NIA a caged parrot, but I will say that it is blind and deaf also,” Owaisi said while addressing a rally on Wednesday.
Earlier, Owaisi had said that justice has not been delivered in the case. He had said that majority of the witnesses turned hostile after June 2014, a time when BJP dispensation under Narendra Modi had taken over at the Centre. “What will be left of the criminal justice system if such biased prosecutions continue justice has not been done?” Owaisi had questioned.
The Opposition Congress, on the other hand, has said that the NIA is fast losing its credibility in the country. Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said that acquittals are happening in each case since the government was formed four years ago and people are losing faith in the agencies.
From Bollywood, poet and lyricist Javed Akhtar has taken a sarcastic jibe at the NIA. Taking to Twitter, Akhtar said that NIA can now probe inter-community marriages in the country. “Mission accomplished !! My congratulations to NIA for their grand success in Mecca Masjid case. Now they have all the time in the world to investigate inter-community marriages,” Akhtar wrote on Twitter. Akhtar, who is also a former Rajya Sabha MP, was referring to the Hadiya case, where the marriage of a Hindu woman with Muslim male is under NIA scanner for possible terror angle.
Earlier, a special NIA court had acquitted Hindu leader Swami Aseemanand and 4 others in the case on lack of evidence. As if that wasn’t enough, the judge who pronounced the verdict also resigned barely hours after the judgment citing personal reasons, a development which added to the controversy. However, the judge had re-joined duty today after his 15-day leave was rejected, PTI reported.
Former JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav also questioned the decision of the court.He also expressed surprise on Judge’s decision to resign soon after the verdict. “If there was no one guilty found then who were involved. People are confused as to who will give justice to siblings & families of those who died (sic),” Yadav said.
On the other hand, BJP leaders have used the verdict to slam the Congress over charges of “Hindu terror”. The party said that opposition party’s “appeasement politics” of “defaming” Hindus has been exposed. There are also reports of that party can use the decision as a major poll issue in Karnataka elections.