Congress, Left attack Modi over stalking issue

New Delhi, Nov 16 : An expose of the alleged "state-sponsored stalking" of a young woman in Gujarat prompted the Congress and the Left Saturday to attack the BJP and its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.

Even as the BJP blamed the Congress' "dirty tricks wing", the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) demanded a court investigation into the issue.

"What was Modi's interest in the matter? In a case involving the chief minister, it would be appropriate for a court investigation into Modi's involvement and if found to be involved, he must be prosecuted," a CPI-M release said.

The CPI-M also said the Gujarat government must take immediate action against Shah and the police officers for violating the Indian Telegraph Act.

"They also have to be prosecuted for the crime of stalking under the recently amended provisions of the IPC related to crimes against women," the party said.

Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari demanded a thorough probe into the expose by investigative websites Cobrapost and, and said Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Rajnath Singh should explan.

Rajnath Singh was quick to respond in Raipur: "There is no question of rethinking on our PM candidate even if (there are) a thousand baseless allegations. We apprehend that the Congress' dirty tricks wing will make such allegations... as the elections draw near."

Attacking Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi without naming him, Tewari said in an address during an event that "the dark clouds of fascism" hung over Gujarat, and "a great evil stalks" the land.

The remarks came following allegations of "state-sponsored stalking" in Gujarat on the orders of former minister Amit Shah, who did it for his "saheb".

Tewari warned that people should seriously ponder over the events in Gujarat under Modi, including the 2002 riots, the fake encounters and the state-sponsored stalking.

According to the expose, the woman's movements and her conversations were being covered by the Gujarat "state Intelligence Bureau, the Crime Branch and the Anti-Terrorist Squad in August 2009 on oral orders, without any valid legal authorisation, and was meant only to serve the interests of someone whom the then minister of state for home, Amit Shah, addressed as 'saheb'."

Congress leader Digvijaya Singh, who never lets go an opportunity to attack Modi, tweeted: "Would All Modi lovers pl react and condemn it or as a true loyalist defend Modi and Amit Shah."

"Modi and Amit Shah use Gujarat Police to spy on an innocent girl! Didn't Gujarat Police and then Home Minister violate the Law of the Land?", he tweeted.

Congress spokesman Meem Afzal demanded a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) inquiry into the allegations.

Afzal said Amit Shah should reveal the name of the "saheb" for whom he asked police and state intelligence to tail a young woman 2009 in Bangalore.

He also said that Amit Shah, who was then minister of state for home, should explain why saheb was "so much interested" in the woman.

However, Pranlal Soni, father of the woman, came out with a statement saying he had himself requested Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi to "look after" his daughter. The father's statement, for the first time, links the controversy to Modi.

--IANS (Posted on 16-11-2013)

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