Opposition parties Tuesday united to corner the BJP over the Bulandshahr violence with the Congress wondering if this was the "change" Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised while alleging that attempts were being made to instigate communal tension ahead of the polls.
Two persons, including a police inspector, were killed on Monday in mob violence during protests by right-wing activists over alleged incidents of cow slaughter in the Uttar Pradesh town.
Promising to take stern action against those guilty, the state government has ordered an inquiry by a Special Investigation Team (SIT).
At a press conference here, Sibal said,"Modi before the 2014 elections used to say we will usher in change... But from 2014 till now, we have seen not a change but revenge, not change but fear, not change but hidden corruption, not change but politics over Ram, politics over Hanuman."
"Is this the change that Modi ji had promised. Look what kind of a change he has got in Bulandshahr," Sibal added.
His party colleague Manish Tiwari termed the incident "very sad and condemnable", and alleged that "one thing is very clear that attempts are being made to incite communal unrest before the elections."
Alleging that there was a "jungle raj" in the state, Bahujan Samaj Party supremo and former UP chief minister Mayawati accused the BJP of "patronising" unscrupulous elements and stressed on the need to establish a rule of law in the state.
"It is an inhuman act... Whoever is responsible for the criminal violent act, stern measures should be taken against them," the minority affairs minister said,
Naqvi's comments came even as some BJP leaders, including MLA Surendra Singh, defended Bajrang Dal and claimed that Inspector Subodh Kumar Singh was killed in police firing.
Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party (SBSP), a BJP ally in the Uttar Pradesh, blamed the Bajrang Dal and the VHP for Monday's mob violence in Bulandshahr, saying the two organisations are creating a rift between Hindus and Muslims with an eye on the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
The CPI(M) blamed Yogi Adityanath's "communally provocative speeches" for the Bulandshahr violence and alleged that it has been "planned" in view of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
"Such incidents are planned in view of the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections. The communally provocative speeches being made by Chief Minister Adityanath have also created an atmosphere for the mobs to act with impunity," the CPI (M) said in a statement.
As the political attack on the BJP intensified, the slain inspector's family reeled under the trauma with his son Abhishek Singh wondering whose father will be the next to fall to violence after he lost his father to "Hindu-Muslim dispute". His father was against violence over religion, he said.
Taking cognizance of the matter, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) sent notices to the Uttar Pradesh government and the state's police chief over the killing of the inspector and the 20-year-old man.
Amnesty India, a human rights body, said a "culture of fear, hatred and impunity has spread across Uttar Pradesh".
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)