New Delhi, Sept 30 (ANI): Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Venkaiah Naidu on Monday criticized Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde's letter to state chief ministers not to detain innocent Muslim youth wrongfully, calling it 'unconstitutional' and driven by vote bank politics.
"The Home Minister has given a directive to the states, which is totally against the Constitution, which is against the democratic principles. It is inspired by vote bank politics, and it is given keeping in mind the upcoming Lok Sabha elections and also state assembly elections," he said.
Meanwhile, Janata Dal- United (JD-U) leader Sabir Ali welcomed Shinde's letter, and said that it would strengthen the basic structure of the country.
"Whether it is a person from minority or majority, anyone who is innocent but detained. This is where people from the minority community have suffered the most, and this is the truth," he said.
"Also, till now the statistics show that the ratio of conviction is almost negligible. But they are kept in prison for ten years, five years, one year or six months, on the basis of suspicion, without facing a trial. So this letter that he has written would strengthen the basic structure of the country," he added.
Earlier in the day, Shinde asked chief ministers of all states to avoid detaining innocent Muslim youth wrongfully.
Shinde said the Central Government has been receiving representations about alleged harassment of innocent Muslim youth by law enforcement agencies, and added that there is a growing feeling of alienation in the community.
"Minority youth have started feeling that they are deliberately targeted and deprived of their basic rights," he added.
"Government has to ensure that no innocent person is subjected to undue harassment," he told the chief ministers.
He urged state governments to set up special courts in consultation with the concerned high court for trial of terror-related cases, appoint special public prosecutors for trial of these cases and give priority to terror cases over other pending cases.
Shinde said law enforcement agencies should be satisfied with regard to communal and social harmony while ensuring zero tolerance for terrorism.
He also called for strict and prompt action against erring police officers.
In May, the central government has set up the 39 special courts under the NIA Act to take up terror-related cases. (ANI)