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Rajasthan CM Gehlot slams BJP for using Pulwama widows to gain political mileage

News Agencies | Updated on: 8 March 2023, 11:57 IST
Ashok Gehlot

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has hit out against BJP which he said were disrespecting the widows of martyrs. In a note posted late on Tuesday night on Twitter, Gehlot accused BJP leaders of taking political mileage of the protest by martyrs of widows.

This comes a day after relatives of three CRPF personnel killed in the 2019 Pulwama terror attack reached Congress leader Sachin Pilot's residence and demanded a meeting with the party high command, accusing the state government of not fulfilling promises made to them.

Writing in Hindi, Gehlot posted on Twitter, "It is the responsibility of all of us to give the highest respect to the martyrs and their families. Every citizen of Rajasthan does his duty to respect the martyrs, but some BJP leaders are disrespecting them by using the name of the widows of our valiant martyrs to earn political mileage. This has never been the tradition in Rajasthan. I condemn it.

"Gehlot said that the widow of Hemraj Meena wants a third statue to be installed at a crossroads even as there are two other statues of the soldier installed at the premises of Government College, Sangod and in the park located in his native village Vinod Kalan. "Such a demand is not appropriate keeping in view the demands of other martyr's families," Gehlot said.

The wife of Rohitash Lamba is seeking a compassionate appointment for her brother-in-law. "If the job is given to the brother of Martyr Shri Lamba today, then in the future the family members or relatives of all the martyrs may start putting undue social and family pressure to give the rightful job to them and their children to other family members.

"Should we create such a difficult situation in front of the heroines (martyr widows) because the rules made at present have been made on the basis of past experiences only? How can it be justified to subjugate the rights of the children of martyrs and give jobs to other relatives? What will happen to the children of martyrs when they become adults? Is it right?"

Gehlot further said that during his first tenure as chief minister in 1999, the Rajasthan government released the Kargil package for dependents of martyrs and it has been made more effective by increasing it from time to time.

He said, "In the Kargil package, Rs 25 lakh to the martyr's wife and 25 bighas of land or housing board house (Rs 25 lakh additional if land or house not taken), a fixed deposit of Rs 5 lakh to the martyr's parents in the monthly income scheme, a public place to be named after the martyr and the wife or son/daughter of the martyr to be given a job."

Gehlot further added that his government has made a provision that if the wives of the martyrs are pregnant at the time of their husband's death and don't want to do a job, then the job will be reserved for the child so that her future can be secured. As per the rules of this package, help has been given to the dependents of Pulwama martyrs. Probably no other state has such a package for martyr families.He reiterated his government and the state's stand on the matter of paying the much-deserved respect to the martyrs and their families and noted, "Rajasthan is the land of valiant heroes where thousands of soldiers have sacrificed their lives for the motherland. The people and the government here respect the martyrs the most. During the Kargil war, I myself went to the homes of 56 martyrs of Rajasthan and joined their families in grief.

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"The women have been staging a 'Dharna' for several days in Jaipur and police allegedly misbehaved with them when they wanted to meet Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot over their demands. On Tuesday, a dharna was staged outside former deputy CM Sachin Pilot's residence. Pilot had on Monday written to Gehlot, demanding an inquiry into the alleged police misbehaviour with the widows.

First published: 8 March 2023, 11:57 IST