In possibly the sharpest attack on the Bharatiya Janata Party amid the ongoing uproar over rape cases, senior Congress leader and former Union minister Kamal Nath today dubbed the BJP as the ‘Balatkar Janata Party’. Speaking to news agency ANI over rising cases of crime against women in the country under the BJP rule, Kamal Nath said that the people of Madhya Pradesh should decide if they would want to start calling the BJP as the ‘Balatkar Janata Party’.
Nath went on to claim that at least 20 leaders of the BJP are involved in rape cases. “I had read somewhere that there are 20 BJP leaders who are involved in rape cases. People of Madhya Pradesh must make a decision whether it should be called BJP or Balatkar Janata Party,” he said.
The remark comes amid a spate of incidents of crime against women that have put the BJP on the backfoot. A BJP MLA from Unnao was arrested last week on charges of raping a Dalit woman and then hatching a conspiracy to kill her father. Also, two senior BJP leaders from Jammu and Kashmir were seen participating in a protest rally in solidarity with the accused persons arrested for allegedly raping a minor and murdering her.
The Congress party has been accusing the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh of shielding Kuldeep Singh Sengar who was arrested by the CBI after Allahabad High Court’s intervention. Party spokesperson Randeep Surjewala on Saturday said that BJP leaders have mastered the “art of extending state protection to rapists, shaming the victim and her family, defending the accused and crying conspiracy”.
According to the National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB) data, a total of 3,29,243 cases of crime against women were registered in 2015. In 2016, 3,38,954 cases were reported across the country. In 2015, 34,651 rape cases were filed while in 2016, 38,947 rape cases were registered with police. When it comes to the rate of conviction in rape cases, the data is very shocking. The NCRB data show in 2016 15,450 cases came up for trial and just 331 ended up in conviction.