Bengaluru: The Bharatiya Janata Party has urged the Karnataka Governor to direct the state government to keep senior journalist Gauri Lankesh away from the committee formed by the government to help bringing the naxals into the mainstream by convincing them to shun violence and surrender.
A delegation of the BJP leaders comprising legislators and leaders from the Malnad region C. T. Ravi, D. N. Jeevaraj and Bhanuprakash, accused Ms. Lankesh of having a soft corner for naxals and said it would not be possible for the government to have a dispassionate view on the issue if she was present on the panel.
Emerging from Raj Bhavan after submitting a memorandum to governor Vajubhai Vala, former minister, C.T. Ravi claimed Ms Lankesh, who is convenor of the Civilian Forum for Peace, was a Naxal supporter and her presence on the committee was likely to help the ultras rather than the government.
Criticising the ongoing efforts to ensure surrender of naxals Sirimane Nagaraj and Noor Zulfiqar, the BJP said the two were old and ill. Instead, efforts should be made to convince the young and active naxals to shun violence.
Meanwhile Chief Minister Siddaramaiah shunned the BJP’s suspicions over Ms. Lankesh. He accused the party of seeing everything with a biased view.