The Congress on Tuesday accused the Uttar Pradesh government of trying to “cover up" the Hathras incident through an affidavit in the Supreme Court and demanded immediate dismissal of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. Addressing a joint press conference, Congress leaders Sushmita Dev, Rajani Patil and Supriya Shrinate also demanded that all officers including the Hathras district magistrate be dismissed, alleging they are part of a conspiracy for a cover-up of the case.
Dev said the entire country has seen the manner in which the Uttar Pradesh government has handled the Hathras incident. The Uttar Pradesh government has again and again done injustice to the victim, she alleged. “Every step taken by the Uttar Pradesh government was to cover up the entire Hathras episode. Today this has been exposed in the form of the affidavit filed by Uttar Pradesh government. The purpose of this affidavit is not for a court-monitored CBI probe but to cover up the incident," she told reporters.
Dev alleged that this affidavit is nothing but a culmination of a cover up that started on September 14. “Stop the cover up. Congress party stands by its demand that Chief minister Yogi Adityanath should be dismissed with immediate effect. The district magistrate and every officer who is part of this conspiracy to hush up such a brutal case of rape should be dismissed and not given any other responsibility pending investigation," she said. Former MP Rajani Patil said the Uttar Pradesh government’s act of a cover-up of the incident is shameful and asked people to not allow more atrocities against women and pack up the BJP government in the state.
Congress spokesperson Supriya Shrinate lamented that there is no official notification of the CBI inquiry into the Hathras incident as announced by the government and the SIT probe is going on. “The manner in which victim-shaming is being done as part of a conspiracy and she is being trolled by the BJP and the government and the police, there should be a probe into this," she said.
She also cited the change in rape laws done by the UPA government that presence of semen or penetration is not necessary now and even an attempt is considered as rape. Shrinate also alleged that the Uttar Pradesh government is trying to make it a case of international conspiracy “through fabricated evidence" and perpetrate caste violence in the state.
She read out certain parts of the affidavit submitted by the Uttar Pradesh government before the court which mentions about black people and cities like San Diego and Phoenix, which are in the US. She said a mention of the New York police department is also made out in the affidavit. Shrinate said the same evidence attached as annexures in the affidavit has been “fabricated" by the Uttar Pradesh government and has been copied from the ‘Black Lives movement in US’.
“It is happening as the entire media and opposition are asking questions and the government is talking of a cover up and international conspiracy. Stop those FIRs based on these concoctions," she said. Dev asked the Uttar Pradesh government to prove to the victim’s family that the body cremated in a hurry by the police at 2.30 am actually is of their daughter’s.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi should dismiss Yogi Adityanath as chief minister of Uttar Pradesh," she demanded. The Mahila Congress chief alleged that it is “shameful" that the Uttar Pradesh government is claiming that no rape took place and that her last rites were done in front of the family with proper rituals, and condemned it.
“This is a case for contempt. There should be a case of contempt of court," she said. Dev said while the government has cited reports saying there is no sign suggesting rape of the victim, the teenager in her dying declaration said she was gang-raped.