Activists' arrests: Dalit leader says police using bullets to 'kill rats'

New Delhi, Delhi, IndiaUpdated: Sep 02, 2018, 08:18 AM IST

Sudha Bharadwaj and Gautam Navlakha. (Source: Image tweeted by @Sudhabharadwaj and Zee News Network) Photograph:(Others)

Referring to police allegations against the Left-wing activists arrested for 'Maoist links', Dalit leader Prakash Ambedkar on Saturday said why bullets were being used when only an insecticide was needed to "kill rats".

His comments come a day after Maharashtra police revealed excerpts from letters allegedly hinting at a plot to assassinate Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

"Does the letter anywhere talk about killing the prime minister? It only spoke of a 'Rajiv Gandhi-style (incident)'. But you added prime minister to it. Only a Tik-20 is needed to kill rats, not bullets," Ambedkar told reporters.

A former MP and chief of Bahujan Mahasangh, Ambedkar is the grandson of Dr B R Ambedkar.

At a press conference here on Friday, Additional Director General of Police Param Bir Singh had read out some letters purportedly exchanged between some of the accused.

An email between Rona Wilson, an activist arrested in June, and a Maoist leader, spoke of a "Rajiv Gandhi-type event to end Modi-raj", Singh had said.

"Comrade Kishen and a few other comrades have proposed concrete steps to end the Modi raj. We are thinking along the lines of another Rajiv Gandhi-like incident," Singh quoted the email as saying.

The police have "conclusive proof" to link the arrested Left-wing activists to the Maoists, the ADG had said.

On August 28, the Pune police arrested Varavara Rao in Hyderabad, Vernon Gonsalves and Arun Ferreira in Mumbai, Sudha Bharadwaj in Faridabad and Gautam Navalakha in Delhi.

The raids were carried out as part of a probe into the Elgaar Parishad conclave in Pune on December 31 last year, which allegedly triggered violence at Koregaon-Bhima in the district the next day.