New Delhi: The BJP on Monday attacked Press Council of India chief Markandey Katju for writing an article in a Pakistan daily against the Gujarat government and alleged that he was engaging in political activity while occupying a quasi-judicial post.
In the article in The Express Tribune, he criticised the Narendra Modi-led government and charged that Muslims did not feel safe under the Modi dispensation.
"The truth is that Muslims in Gujarat fear that if they speak out against the horrors of 2002, they may be attacked and victimised. In the whole of India, Muslims (who are over 200 million of the people of India) are solidly against Modi (though there are a handful of Muslims who for some reason disagree)," he wrote.
Reacting strongly to this, BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said, "Katju is free to voice his opinion but has to first answer whether he is occupying a quasi-judicial position or not?
"When Supreme Court and high court judges do not engage in political activities, same should apply to Katju also. He cannot be doing political activity while holding a quasi judicial post."
Asked about his attack on Modi, Javadekar said Gujarat's progress is there for all to see and Katju's claims need not be retributed.
Katju alleged that in the 2002 riots, "Muslims were massacred, their homes burnt and other horrible crimes committed against them."
He also refuted claims that Gujarat has progressed under Modi, saying the Chief Minister has only given concessions to big industrial houses and offered them cheap land and electricity in the name of development. Katju also maintained that the standard of living of the people in Gujarat has not improved under Modi.