New Delhi, March 10 (IANS) Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday said that key documents related to the Ishrat Jahan case have gone missing from his ministry as he blamed the previous Congress-led government of a flip-flop over the controversial 2004 shootout that killed the alleged Lashkar-e-Taiba woman operative.
“Two letters from the then home secretary to the attorney general in 2009 have gone missing. The then attorney general had vetted two affidavits regarding the case. Those are also not available,” Rajnath Singh told the Lok Sabha replying to a brief debate on the controversial June 15, 2004 shootout.
He said that the ministry has launched an internal investigation to find the missing documents “which will bring out all the facts” in the open.
Without naming Congress’ P. Chidambaram, Rajnath Singh alleged that affidavits were corrected on the intervention of the then home minister and reaffirmed that an investigation has found that the Thane girl was a terrorist – a claim also seconded by American-Pakistani terrorist David Coleman Headley.
“I am pained to say that there was a flip-flop on Ishrat Jahan case during the previous UPA (United Progressive Alliance) regime. She was described as an LeT terrorist in the first affidavit filed in the Gujarat High Court but unfortunately the facts were given another dimension in an additional affidavit which was filed a month later” Rajnath Singh said, amid pandemonium by the opposition.
“The second affidavit seems to be weakening the fact that Ishrat Jahan was an LeT operative which was clearly stated in the first based on an IB input. It seems the entire episode was a conspiracy to trouble the then chief minister of Gujarat Narendra Modi.”
Rajnath Singh alleged that the previous government had tried to give a political and communal colour to terrorism and reminded the Congress of the “saffron terror” label given to describe acts of violence allegedly motivated by Hindu nationalists.
“Saffron terror was the previous government’s term. Colour, creed and religion are not linked to terrorism. They gave a communal colour to terrorism. This is opportunistic secularism.”
The controversy over the case flared up again after Headley made the startling claim on February 11 this year about the 2004 Gujarat encounter – the already murky Ishrat Jahan case has become even murkier.