Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh government on Wednesday admitted that process was underway to withdraw ' political' cases in the Muzaffarnagar riots of 2013 in which 63 people were killed and over 50,000 rendered homeless.
"The government was only considering to withdraw political cases related to the Muzaffarnagar riots," said state Law Minister Brajesh Pathak here.
He said that several political leaders were implicated in the riots and hence government had started process to withdraw them.
"It is nothing new as in the past too, state government had done such thing," he added.
UP government's law department has sought report from Muzaffarnagar and other districts on the cases lodged against politicians, particularly of the BJP in the 2013 riots.
On Monday, BJP MPs and Legislators, along with Jat and Khaap leaders from Muzaffarnagar met Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath to press their demand for withdrawal of cases against the BJP and other leaders, accused in the riots. Former Union Minister Sanjeev Baliyan and Muzaffarnagar BJP MP, along with a 12-member delegation, met the CM at his office here, to apprise him about their demand.
The delegation also included Bharatiya Kisan Union leader Rakesh Tikait, along with other Khaap and Jat leaders of western UP. Later, BJP MLA Sangeet Som and others too met the CM on the same issue.
The leaders tried to impress the CM to expedite the process to withdraw the cases against the BJP and Jat leaders. Later, the delegation members confirmed that the CM has given them assurance.
Last month, UP government had sought opinion of the concerned District Magistrate regarding the status of the Muzaffarnagar riot cases, and asking if withdrawing it would be the right step in the public interest.
The state Law Department had sought details on 13 points in nine cases, that was registered on August 31, 2013 and thereafter. There is no mention of the leader's name in letter, except the serial number of the case.
A lot of BJP leaders, were named in the FIR in Muzaffarnagar riots, including Muzaffarnagar MP Sanjeev Baliyan, Bijnore MP Bhartendra Singh, Budhana MLA Umesh Malik and VHP leader Sadhvi Prachi.
One of the cases against them, which also names Sadhvi Prachi, is of making inflammatory speeches at a mahapanchayat on August 31, 2013, which is believed to have been one of the triggers for the riots.
Other BJP leaders facing the riots cases include BJP MLA from Thana Bhawan, Shamli and UP Minister Suresh Rana, apart from BJP MLA from Sardhana Sangeet Singh Som.
Last year, police filed a closure report in a riot case against Som, citing lack of evidence. UNI