Mangaluru, Apr 25, 2017: A week is left for the huge convention planned by United Muslim Front demanding justice for Ahmed Qureshi, a victim of alleged police brutality, on May 2 at Nehru Maidan here, Food and Civil Supplies Minister U T Khader on April 24, Monday defended the neutral stand of Congress as the CID is probing the case.
Reacting to media probing, Khader said the party is not opposed to any conventions for fostering bonds and unity in the society. But the party is equally opposed to any conventions being organised on behalf of anti-social elements. In the case of Qureshi, a rather complicated issue, the CID sleuths are already probing into the issue. Moreover, the probe into his criminal antecedents, if any or his involvement in the attempt to murder case of Prakash Poojary, is on. If the innocents are troubled, action will be initiated, he added.
On the involvement of former mayor K Ashraf, a Congress leader in organising the convention under the banner of the front, Khader shrugged it off as an addition to the list of many such organisations which ceased soon after its formation in no time, in the past.
To a query on Ashraf quitting the party again, this time for joining Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI), Khader said, “I would rack my brain only if a party worker in my constituency quits the organisation, but not any leader.” The party higher-ups are also seized of the developments and have sought a report from Dakshina Kannada District Congress committee in this regard, he said.
On the much queried political development in his family, with his brother Dr U T Iftiqar set to join BJP, Khader denied any such development. Moreover, there is no question of joining any other party other than Congress, as the family is indebted to the organisation by giving ticket to contest elections for subsequent terms. Khader said “If such situation arises, we will stay aloof from politics, but will not join any other party.”