Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha has raked up yet another controversy as he defended lynching convicts while speaking to Republic TV’s Editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami.
“When it’s come to criminal law, we should consider whether there is a shadow of reasonable doubt. If we had any consideration for the Constitutional rights of these people, then we should be saying that the matter is under appeal and therefore, we shouldn’t pre-judge the matter. We should not be so rude and so offensive and so unjust to call these people lynchers, killers and murderers,” said Jayant Sinha.
Sinha, however, said that he regrets garlanding the lynchers but doesn’t regret fighting for justice.
“I regret the garlanding, I do not regret fighting for justice. What I have done is absolutely honourable and noble, I do not understand why people are attacking me for this. I stand up for a lot of people who are convicted in various cases, but only when there is reasonable doubt on that issue. It is important to provide them justice,” said Sinha.
“The High Court said that they did not do this. It was my responsibility to help them, I am just fighting for justice,” he added.
On July 6, a photograph went viral in which the minister could be seen felicitating eight convicts, who came out on bail, of lynching a meat trader in Jharkhand state last year.
Jayant Sinha's act received strong criticism not only from the Opposition, but also from his father and former Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha. A petition was also started on Change.org which demanded removal of Jayant Sinha's Harvard Business School alumni status. The petition was also supported by Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Twitter. Following this, Jayant Sinha challenged Rahul Gandhi to a live debate for attacking him at a personal level over the controversy he was embroiled in for felicitating convicts in the Ramgrh lynching case.