The Congress on Friday demanded the resignation of Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar after violence, arson, police firing and deaths following the rape conviction of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh. The Opposition party hit out at both the Haryana and central governments. Congress leader Manish Tewari told The Indian Express that “what happened in Haryana was pre-meditated, orchestrated and deliberately provoked violence in which, in addition to the Haryana government, the Centre is equally culpable”.
Senior leader Abhishek Singhvi said the Khattar government was squarely responsible. “When reports of people gathering with violent intent were there before the government why wasn’t pre-emptive action taken. Panchkula is home to the Western Command of the Indian Army. If the Haryana police or the paramilitary forces were incapable, as the Jat agitation had demonstrated, then why wasn’t the Army deployed in a pre-emptive move?” he asked.
Congress chief Sonia Gandhi spoke to Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh and asked about the situation in that state. Sonia expressed shock at the “unabated violence” in Panchkula and other parts of Haryana and the “widespread destruction of public property and senseless attack on the media.” “CM Khattar sets new standard for maximum government, minimum governance,” senior Congress leader P Chidambaram wrote on Twitter.