Bengaluru: The issue of senior journalist SA Hemanth Kumar being arrested for his alleged role in the fake letter row relating to a separate religion tag for Lingayats refuses to die down.

As he has been remanded to judicial custody till May 9, BJP MP from Mysuru, Pratap Simha, addressed a press conference at the party headquarters in Bengaluru today.

Taking exception to the arrest of SA Hemanth Kumar, the MP said, “Home minister MB Patil is using the police force for his personal use. It is wrong. It can’t be used for personal gains and settle scores.”

Simha also lashed out at the home minister for reopening something that was as old as two years. “Why would the home minister reopen something that is as old as two years? It is pure vendetta and nothing else,” he added.

The BJP MP was also unsparing in his criticism for the coalition government being passive and step-motherly when it came to issues relating to Hindu religion.

“When so-called litterateurs like prof KS Bhagwan talk ill of Hindu gods and goddesses, no arrests are made. Why are the chief minister and the home minister quiet?” he thundered.

On April 24, the founder of Postcard News Mahesh Vikram Hegde was arrested on charges of publishing a fake letter on Lingayats. Several BJP leaders had questioned the arrest, saying it was nothing but vindictiveness and vendetta. Incidentally, Hemanth Kumar, who is now in judicial custody, had himself hit out saying why was Mahesh arrested when the publishing of the letter happened on other portals as well.

On the same day, another lady Shruti Bellakki was also arrested on charges of spreading hatred and enmity between groups. She had criticised MB Patil for trying to split Hinduism in the name of Lingayats.