January 28, 2021 9:38:54 am
A day after the Republic Day violence in Delhi while the Congress high-command stopped at condemning the events and underlining the importance of peace, the Punjab unit of the party chose to vociferously highlight the distinction between the farmers’ legitimate stir and actions of those who indulged in violence and “brought shame to the nation”.
The charge was led by CM Amarinder Singh who said that while the incident has brought shame to the country and weakened the farmers’ agitation, he continued to stand with farmers as Centre’s agri laws were “wrong”.
“My head hangs in shame at what happened yesterday in the national capital,” said Amarinder while categorically stating those who were responsible for the incident “were not farmers but misguided youth who were indulging in symbolism”.
“Whoever has done it (indulged in violence at Red Fort) has brought shame to the country and Delhi Police should investigate and take action,” he said.
The CM said that Centre should also probe the involvement, if any, of any political party or nation. He, however, added that no farm leaders should be unnecessarily targeted or harassed by the police.
Amarinder declared that the future of Punjab’s youth lay in peace and recent developments had slowed down investment in the state. He demanded action against the perpetrators, who he said were not farmers but misguided youth indulging in symbolism.
PPCC chief Sunil Kumar Jakhar, meanwhile, called the incident a “dirty conspiracy” and likened it to the Pulwama terror attack.
Jakhar, while speaking to The Indian Express, called the incident a “total repeat of Pulwama” and said it smacked of a conspiracy. “At that time the entire country expected skirmish with Pakistan and Pulwama happened. We knew this was coming. There is a case where Deep Sidhu was announcing from rooftops that a saffron flag would be hoisted from the Red Fort, but no preventive step was taken.
“I was watching on TV last night that cops were sitting on chairs at the Red Fort when the flag was being hoisted. It was a script written, executed by BJP and acted by Deep Sidhu. The farmers unions had not even deviated from the route provided by the police. They were being welcomed by people of Delhi with open arms,” he said.
Punjab Congress’ reaction was being viewed by some as a deviation from the reaction of party’s high command which was quick to condemn the violence Tuesday.
On Wednesday, former AICC chief Rahul Gandhi appealed to the Narendra Modi government to repeal, what he claimed were, “anti-agriculture” laws. Taking to Twitter, he also shared a quote by Mahatma Gandhi that said: “In a gentle way, you can shake the world”.
“Once again, I appeal to the Modi government that the anti-agriculture laws be taken back immediately,” Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet in Hindi.
Jakhar, however, said that Congress was united in its reaction, “There is no dichotomy. Rahul ji said he condemned violence and that he is against the farm laws. This is what we are also saying. I see no reason that the farmers unions should be on the defensive. The incident stinks of cheapest possible politics, not becoming of a democracy. The BJP is trying to malign the farmers besides creating a religious drift. Why does the buck not stop at the Union Home Minister? Why has the agitation prolonged so far? As for the agitation, it is a revolution, an uprising of people. None of the revolutions have been so peaceful.”
Congress Rajya Sabha MP Partap Singh Bajwa also said he stood with the farmers. “The principles of non-violent resistance were maintained for over two months on the borders of Delhi. There was never an aggressive response. Those who were the masterminds of the incidents yesterday should be thoroughly investigated,” he said.
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