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Sonia Gandhi leads protest march, questions PM Narendra Modi’s silence

Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday submitted a memorandum to President Pranab Mukherjee expressing deep concern over the rising intolerance in the country.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: November 4, 2015 12:32:02 am
congress, protest march, congress march, intolerance, sonia gandhi, rahul gandhi, communal hindu, muslim, modi, pm modi Congress president Sonia Gandhi, vice-president Rahul Gandhi and party leaders march to Rashtrapati Bhavan on Tuesday. (Express Photo by: Oinam Anand)

Accusing the “ruling establishment” of abetting an “atmosphere of fear, intolerance and intimidation in the country”, Congress president Sonia Gandhi led a protest march to Rashtrapati Bhavan on Tuesday and submitted a memorandum to President Pranab Mukherjee.

“A sinister campaign has been unleashed to create social and communal tension with the objective of polarising our society. The PM’s silence and inaction has only conveyed the impression that he condones all that has been happening,” the Congress said in the memorandum.

Watch Video: The Kind Of Intolerance We Have Witnessed In Last 1 Year Has Been Unprecedented: Sharmila Tagore

Sonia along with Rahul and other senior Congress leaders marched from Vijay Chowk to Rashtrapati Bhavan after offering floral tributes to the statue of Mahatma Gandhi at Parliament complex. Top Congress leaders, including former PM Manmohan Singh, Mallikarjun Kharge and Ghulam Nabi Azad, and MPs from both Houses of Parliament took part in the march.

Watch Video: Author Krishna Sobti On ‘Growing Intolerance In The Country’

“The President has spoken, but PM Narendra Modi continues to be silent which clearly indicates his tacit support to such activities,” Sonia said.

In the memorandum, Congress also thanked the President for speaking out against the “intolerance”. The Congress said Modi’s council of ministers continues to “harbour individuals who are contributing to spreading hate and divisiveness”.

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Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, too, accused the government of endorsing communal tension. “The PM and the finance minister believe nothing is happening in the country and feel everything is fine. This is at the heart of the problem. These people believe in intolerance,” he said.

When asked about Finance Minister Arun Jaitley’s comments that protests against intolerance were manufactured, Rahul said, “Yes, the RSS and BJP are manufacturing these incidents. The finance minister feels there is nothing going on. A large number of people have made it clear that they are unhappy with the way this government views this country,” he said.

Meanwhile, as Congress leaders and workers were gathering at Vijay Chowk before the march, a group of around 50 Sikhs arrived at the scene and started raising slogans against the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. But police removed the group from the spot before the senior Congress leaders arrived. Speaking at the election rally in Bihar, Modi had recently referred to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.

Highlights

5:55 pm

5:53 pm People are being lynched and killed and the PM is silent. Finance Minister believes nothing is going on in the country: Rahul Gandhi

5:51 pm

5:51 pm

5:41 pm Large numbers of people have made it very clear that they are unhappy with the way this Govt views this country: Rahul Gandhi

5:35 pm We have expressed concern over rising intolerance, impatience in the memorandum: Sonia Gandhi

5:33 pm There is atmosphere of intolerance everywhere, says Sonia Gandhi after submitting a memorandum to the president.

5:33 pm  PM doesn’t believe he needs to say a word on the issue: Rahul Gandhi

5:33 pm: Rahul Gandhi hits out at PM

4:46 pm Does the BJP know the meaning of ‘sorry’? We have already apologized for the 1984 riots: Congress leader Salman Khurshid

4:46 pm Arun Jaitley’s statement is like a lawyer who has been briefed and does not believe sincerely in it: Salman Khurshid

4:38 pm

4:47 pm

4:32 pm Congress members pay tribute to Mahatama Gandhi before the march.

4:30 pm

4:29 pm

4:22 pm:

4:17 pm

4:09 pm 1984 riots victims protest at Congress march.

4:00 pm

 

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