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    After Hathras case, UP government’s hopes lie with CBI to salvage state's reputation

    Synopsis

    The Yogi government did not learn from its similar mistake last year when it had blocked Priyanka from going to Sonbhadra to meet the victims of a tribal massacre, that led her to camp in Chunar Fort and the victims were finally brought there to meet her.

    TNN
    Additional Chief Secretary of Uttar Pradesh Awanish Kumar Awasthi meets the family members of a 19-year-old Dalit woman who died after being allegedly raped two ago, at Bulgadi village in Hathras, Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020. (PTI Photo)
    New Delhi: The Hathras case has been an unmitigated image disaster for the Yogi Adityanath government due to a series of goof-ups, with amends being made only after the damage was done. A belief at the top levels of the government and state BJP that the campaign is a political conspiracy against the CM has contributed to the government’s ambivalent response.

    The victim’s hurried cremation at 2:30 am (which no official has been able to justify so far), the inexplicable decision to block the entry of the media and the opposition parties a day later, the “no rape” claim by a top police officer despite the victim’s statement before a magistrate, not removing the district magistrate who is at the centre of the controversy and delay in recommending a CBI probe have firmly put the Yogi Adityanath government on the back-foot in the case.

    The time-tested strategy to quell public anger in big cases, by CMs like Mayawati, has been to immediately remove the DM and SSP and promptly announce a CBI probe. But in Hathras, blocking the opposition and media further fuelled public anger. Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi grabbed attention by deciding to walk to Hathras and TV channels rushed teams to Hathras to cover it as a campaign. On Sunday, RLD leader Jayant Chaudhary faced a lathicharge. The Yogi government did not learn from its similar mistake last year when it had blocked Priyanka from going to Sonbhadra to meet the victims of a tribal massacre, that led her to camp in Chunar Fort and the victims were finally brought there to meet her.

    Those close to the CM, however, told ET that the campaign around the Hathras case is aimed at damaging Yogi’s image and push UP into a caste turmoil ahead of the 2022 polls. They claim that till five days after the incident on September 14, the girl and her family had only blamed one person for the murderous assault. But, they say, opposition party leaders later met the family in an Aligarh hospital and she changed her statement on September 22, saying four persons had gangraped her. “That is why the SIT was set up and tasked to reveal the conspiracy and the evil designs behind the whole matter. Forensic reports confirm no rape,” an official said.

    This was also the reason why the state government wanted narco analysis and lie-detector tests conducted on the victim’s family too. However, the political opposition to this step and rising heat in the case ultimately made the CM announce a CBI probe on Saturday night. There is also a counter-reaction from the upper-caste community in the area who allege their boys have been implicated under pressure from the media and the opposition. The UP government now hopes that the CBI will be able to satisfy all sides and salvage the government’s reputation.

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    9 Comments on this Story

    Mohan Raman52 days ago
    Explorindia..has ID and no Face.. Your English has given it out as to where you belong. IT wing of the Hate mongers. Bad luck.
    anantha krishnan53 days ago
    There is always confrontaion between uper caste and lower caste confrontation in H industan That is eating the social fabric of the naion In all such cases the partyin power always takes side with the powerful upper caste unofficilly I nthis there is no difference between this party or that party. it is very unfortunate
    N S53 days ago
    CAA like riots was planned as per intelligence report we saw political vulturism along with media vulturism during this issue
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