Political parties condemn attack on Ramdev

New Delhi: Political parties were quick to condemn the attack on yoga guru Ramdev but also used the opportunity to score points over each on the increasing frequency of such incidents and the issue of black money and corruption.

"It is becoming a common phenomenon for individuals to commit such incidents to get publicity and government should act firmly against the culprits. Such incidents were seen in the case of lawyer Prashant Bhushan and Union Minister Sharad Pawar," BJP spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy said.

He pointed that other than the increasing instances of such incidents, there is also a "lurking suspicion" that the today`s attack has been prompted by the crusade launched by Ramdev against black money and corruption.

"Sometime ago, we have witnessed Ramdev and his followers being lathi-charged and forcefully evicted from Ramlila grounds and police terror being unleashed on them allegedly at the behest of the Central government," Rudy said. He maintained that the BJP is "constrained" to believe that today`s incident could be an outcome of the designs of the UPA government, which is suspected of retaliating against those who are raising a banner of revolt against corruption and black money.

Congress also condemned the incident but insisted that the attack on Ramdev had nothing to do with opposition to the government from some quarters on corruption issues. "Whatever has happened, it is very unfortunate…Everybody has a right to express his view and if anybody has done anything wrong I condemn it and I am sure law will take its own course," Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi said.

Congress also maintained that every individual has the right to oppose a political party.
"There are so many persons, so many political parties which are opposing Congress. If Babaji is also opposing Congress it will not make any difference at all. As far as black money is concerned our government has done its best and still we are doing our best," Alvi said.

While the Congress spokesperson insisted that this is a serious issue and not related to Ramdev alone, party general secretary Digvijay Singh demanded a probe to find out details of the man who threw ink on Ramdev`s face. "Such incidents have been taking place and there should be a probe to find out who this man is," Singh told reporters.
The BJP also asked the government get to the bottom of this attack. "UPA government should come clean on this incident and an inquiry at the highest level must be conducted as the individual who has committed this felony was carrying a wireless set. Complete protection should be provided to Ramdev," Rudy demanded.

RJD Chief Lalu Prasad sought strict action against the culprit and rued that such instances aimed at gaining publicity were become too common. "The ink throwing incident should be fully dealt with as per the law. This craving for publicity should be tackled legally. A shoe was thrown on (former US President George) Bush…and here also (on Home Minister P Chidambaram).

Authorities should tighten the screws on such elements and deal with them firmly," Prasad said. Condemning the incident, the RJD chief said he may have differences with Ramdev but there was no denying that the latter had done good work.