BJP leader Lal Singh threatens journalists,draws sharp rebuke from Congress, NC

New Delhi, June 23: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Choudhary Lal Singh on Friday threatened journalists to ‘fall in line & draw a line’ over their reporting on the Kathua rape and murder case,, with an apparent reference to the assassination of Kashmir journalist Shujaat Bukhari.

Singh’s controversial reference that if media persons won’t mend the ways they will meet the fate of journalist Shujaat Bukhari drew sharp rebuke from Congress party who asked if BJP leaders have some information off the assassination of Kashmir journalist Shujaat Bukhari.

Singh’s outrageous remarks were condemned by both the Congress party and  former chief minister and National Congress leader Omar Abdullah.

Referring to Kathua case, Singh told a press conference in Jammu on Friday that Kashmiri journalists had created a “wrong atmosphere” there.

Shujaat’s death is now being used by BJP as a tool to threaten other journalists.

Singh was the forest minister in the previous PDP-BJP government and was asked to resign from the cabinet in April after he participated in a rally in support of the accused in the rape and murder of an 8-year-old Muslim tribal girl in Kathua.

“Now I will tell Kashmiri journalists to draw a line on the journalism you do and how you have to live. Do you have to live like what happened to Basharat, so that such a situation emerges?,” Singh said in an apparent reference to Rising Kashmir editor Shujaat Bukhari who was assassinated by gunmen outside his office on June 14.

“So mend your ways and draw a line, so that this brotherhood remains intact and there is progress,” Singh said.

“Dear journalists, your colleagues in Kashmir just got threatened by a @BJP4India MLA. It seems Shujaat’s death is now a tool for goons to use to threaten other journalists,” Omar tweeted.

 

Senior Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala questioned that it shows BJP leaders have some information  of the assassination of Kashmir journalist Shujaat Bukhari.
“Shocking & reprehensible! BJP J&K MLA, Lal Singh openly threatens journalists to ‘fall in line & draw a line’. He horrifically says that otherwise they will meet the fate of Shujat Bukhari by naming his brother. Does BJP leaders have some special knowledge of the assassination?”, Surjewala tweeted.

 

 

 

Shujaat Bukhari’s brother Basharat Bukhari was law and parliamentary affairs minister in the PDP-BJP government before BJP withdrew from the alliance.

 

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