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Karnataka Congress corporator claims daughter killed due to ’love jihad’

Mangalore Today News Network

Hubballi, April 20, 2024: Karnataka Congress Councillor Niranjan Hiremath, whose daughter was stabbed to death by her ex-classmate Fayaz Khondunaik at her college, has said she was murdered due to "love jihad".



Neha Hiremath, 23, who was pursuing a Masters degree at BVB College in Hubballi, was stabbed to death by Fayaz on Thursday on her college campus. Her father said the accused stabbed her 7-8 times as she had turned down his proposal.

“If this is not Love Jihad, then what is?” Niranjan Hiremath asked.

“Incidents of this sort have been happening. I see various cases, and their cruelty is increasing. Why are youngsters going astray? Things have come to a point where I cannot hesitate to say this. Because I know the pain of losing a daughter. I have seen in various cases now, of parents losing children. I think this ’Love Jihad’ is spreading a lot,” Niranjan Hiremath said.

His remark comes at a time when the BJP and the ruling Congress have been engaged in a war of words over the 23-year-old’s murder.

While the BJP alleged "love jihad" angle to the case and claimed the incident showed deteriorating law and order in the state, the Congress government denied any communal angle to the incident.

Karnataka Congress leader G Parameshwara claimed that Neha and Fayaz were in a relationship before it soured.

But the woman’s father, who is also a Congress councillor, spoke contrary to his party.

He also demanded that no bail plea should be filed on the accused’s behalf and no help should be extended to him in any way. He further demanded capital punishment for the crime.

“I demand the court, the Bar Association and the police to take strict action in cases of love jihad and punish the perpetrators... One person has been arrested so far out of four. I demand the others also be arrested at the earliest... If this is not love jihad then what is?... For love jihad, they target girls of good families... He should be encountered or hanged at the earliest," Hiremath said.

In his first statement after his daughter’s murder on Thursday, Hiremath said she was stabbed by an "unknown person" who was from a "different caste"

“After my daughter’s classes ended at 4.30 pm, she came out of her college and an unknown man attacked her by stabbing. She died on the spot,” news agency PTI quoted Niranjan Hiremath as saying on Thursday.

"When she was finished with her classes in evening, an unknown man (approached her on college campus and) stabbed her 7-8 times in 30 seconds. She died on spot," he added.

Hiremath said the accused had proposed to his daughter and she had turned him down.

"She told him that their castes were different and that she was not interested in any relationship. This infuriated the man and he killed her," Hiremath said.

Fayaz Khondunaik, who ran away after killing Neha, was arrested by the police on Thursday.

Courtesy: India Today