Pepper spray episode in parliament engineered to crush protest, says Jagan

YSRCP chief Jaganmohan Reddy accused the Congress of conniving with expelled MP L Rajagopal to crush the protest.

New Delhi | Updated: February 18, 2014 8:56:04 am
YSR Congress party chief Jaganmohan Reddy. (Reuters) YSR Congress party chief Jaganmohan Reddy. (Reuters)

Launching a blistering attack on Congress, YSRCP chief Jaganmohan Reddy Monday charged the party with engineering the pepper spray episode in Parliament, in connivance with its expelled MP Lagadapati Rajagopal, to crush the protest against Telangana Bill.

He also alleged that a company owned by Rajagopal had received the approval for Corporate Debt Restructuring (CDR) to the tune of Rs 8,000 crore, a month ago.

“Congress plotted this whole game, where a pepper spray incident was forced upon Parliament to clear everybody, who is protesting. Rajagopal, who actually sprayed pepper, isn’t he a Congress man?” Jagan asked while briefing reporters on the sidelines of a protest organised by his party against bifurcating Andhra Pradesh at Jantar Mantar.

“Do you believe if somebody is opposing Congress party, if somebody is really a rebel to the party, a CDR would happen with the consent of Congress party,” he said, citing media reports about Rajagopal’s company getting approval for CDR.

Earlier in the day, he accused Sonia Gandhi of dividing the state for political gains. Referring to her Italian background, he dubbed the Indian National Congress as “Italian National Congress” and said, “Even Britishers did not do what she did to my state of Andhra Pradesh”.

He claimed that the Congress came up with the idea of dividing the state with the sole aim of making Rahul Gandhi Prime Minister as it hoped to win some seats by aligning with TRS in Telangana. He said the Congress was “creating a situation, where the Opposition parties could not speak out”.

Congress had expelled six LS MPs from Seemandhara, including Rajagopal, who opposed creation of Telangana and had given a notice of no-confidence motion against the government, on February 11. Asked about BJP’s stand on the bill, Jagan expressed hope that the principal Opposition party would help to keep Andhra Pradesh united. “I can be hopeful… Beyond that tell me what can I do?… I am hoping that they will come forward to keep the state united,” he stressed, while calling on the entire Opposition to set aside their differences for the cause.

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