The Congress Monday said the violence by supporters of the sect leader Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh in Haryana last week was “state sponsored”. All India Mahila Congress president Shobha Oza also condemned the “clean chit” given by the ruling BJP to the Haryana government in the aftermath of the August 25 violence erupted after the conviction of the Dera Sacha Sauda chief in a rape case.
“According to legal experts, President’s rule should have been imposed following the violence by Dera supporters. However, instead of taking such a step, the Centre gave a clean chit to the Manohar Lal Khattar government which failed to control the violence,” Oza told PTI here. Terming the rampage and violence as the “government sponsored”, Oza said the Punjab and Haryana High Court had repeatedly exhorted the government to take steps to maintain the law and order ahead of Singh’s conviction.
“Despite section 144 of CrPC being in place, more than 1.5 lakh Dera supporters gathered in Panchkula and took law into their hands,” she said referring to August 25 violence that left scores dead. Referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Mann Ki Baat’ programme in which he stated that violence in the name of faith won’t be tolerated in the country, Oza said Congress wanted to know who was supposed to stop the rampage in name of faith in Haryana.
Oza also accused the BJP of “failing” to keep its electoral promise to enact a law granting reservation for women in the country. “It is the responsibility of the Narendra Modi government to present the Women’s Reservation Bill in Parliament and get it passed. Congress would extend full support to this bill,” the Congress leader said.
The BJP on Saturday ruled out removal of the Haryana chief minister, saying the government controlled the situation within three hours with “minimum possible damage”. A special CBI court today sentenced the Dera chief to 20 years in prison after his conviction in two rape cases.