Panaji, Oct 23 (IANS) The Goa unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has undertaken a massive drive to distribute a controversial CD that shows Chief Minister Digambar Kamat and his wife in the company of people accused of stockpiling swords following a communal riot in south Goa earlier this year.
The BJP has claimed that the CD, shot in March this year, shows Kamat, along with his wife Asha Kamat, in jovial conversation with Jalil Sheikh and Maqbool Shaikh, both of whom have been accused in the swords case, along with one Altaf Syed, who is being tried for raping a minor.
'We are going to ensure that copies of the CD reach at least 10,000 people in Goa. They need to realise the company our chief minister keeps,' Leader of Opposition and BJP leader Manohar Parrikar told IANS Thursday evening.
Parrikar also informed that he had submitted a copy of the CD to the police department. 'I will ensure that the matter is taken to its logical conclusion,' the leader of opposition reiterated.
He further informed that the footage, which shows Kamat wearing a trademark white shirt and black trousers seated along with his wife in a tiny room, was shot when the chief minister had visited a dargah at Vishalgad in Maharashtra.
'The case is almost dead. It's been 110 days since the day offences were registered against Jalil, Maqbool and others in July. How will the police act when the chief minister himself hobnobs with these persons,' Parrikar asked.
The BJP leader has also alleged that the chief minister's stronghold of Moti Dongor, in his electoral constituency of Margao, was a safe haven for criminals. 'I am not saying that everyone staying there is a criminal. But Moti Dongor is definitely a safe haven for criminals,' Parrikar claimed.
He also alleged that it was one of Kamat's confidantes, Zarina Shaikh, a Margao Municipal Council councillor, who had arranged for the lodging of Tariq Ahmed Batloo, who was arrested by the Goa Police for allegedly possessing RDX and detonators in 2006.
While Batloo was subsequently acquitted, Parrikar claimed that the police had not probed why Zarina had assisted Batloo in his search for lodgings in Margao.
Kamat in a recent interaction with the media had rubbished the allegations made by the BJP vis a vis the CD. 'I have a photograph where Manohar Parrikar is seen accepting a flower from one of these persons,' Kamat had retorted.
Speaking to IANS on Thursday evening Goa Pradesh Congress Committee spokesperson Jeetendra Deshprabhu claimed that the BJP was trying to recreate the Karnataka experiment in Goa, by whipping up communal passion. 'They are only trying to provoke the people of Goa,' Deshprabhu claimed, adding that such stunts were best ignored.