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Ram Madhav had 45-minute meeting with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti before taking meetings of BJP Legislature Party comprising ministers, MLAs, MLCs and senior office bearers followed by exclusive meeting with 11 party ministers at the BJP headquarters at Trikuta Nagar.

Hitting out at the Congress for communalising the Kathua rape and murder of the eight-year-old girl, Lekhi said: "You see their (Congress) plan, first shout minority minority, then Dalit Dalit, and now women women, and then try to somehow fix blame of state issues on the Centre".

Singh and Ganga who were holding the portfolios of forests and industries and commerce in the Mufti-led PDP-BJP coalition government, respectively had submitted their resignation letters to the BJP's J&K unit president Sat Paul Sharma on Friday amid growing criticism over their publicly siding with the accused.

Lekhi said the woman counsel appearing for the Kathua rape victim was being pressurised not to appear in the case. The body of the girl was recovered from Rassana forest on January 17 - almost a week after she went missing while grazing horses in the forest area. While Ganga went to Rasana in Kathua as he was the party's minister in-charge of Hiranagar, Samba and Vijyapur, Singh had the charge for Kathua, Basholi and Lakhanpur.

Sources said the BJP high command in Delhi directed the two ministers to resign. A much-relieved Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for defusing the situation and said the unfortunate incident had brought the people of the state and the rest of the country "together".


While the crime itself makes one wonder if the term "beastly" we frequently use to describe such crimes is a gross injustice to the beasts, what is even more revolting is what followed after the Jammu and Kashmir crime branch filed the charge sheet in the case recently. "They have been victimised", Balbir Singh, a spokesman for Choudhary Lal Singh, told AFP.

The BJP strode to power in the state on the promise of "doing justice to the Hindus of Jammu who have been complaining of facing discrimination by the Muslim chief ministers in government jobs and seats in the Assembly". On the CBI probe, Mr. Madhav said, "It is for the court to decide.We too want that real accused be punished". Congress is trying to politicize the issue.

During the investigation, the police arrested the caretaker and alleged he was the mastermind behind the kidnapping, rape, and killing of the girl from a nomadic tribe.

Opposition parties National Conference and the Congress had demanded that Mufti should sack the two ministers.

"Yesterday (Saturday), they went there in two cars and threatened them to keep quiet or leave the village".


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