Updated: February 3, 2020 8:28:28 pm
While Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the protest was a “political conspiracy to destroy the country’s harmony”, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said BJP did not want to clear the Shaheen Bhagh road, as it was the only issue it had to fight the election on.
Speaking at News18′s ‘Agenda Delhi’, Kejriwal said: “I don’t know why the central government is not opening the road near Shaheen Bagh when the issue comes under them. Basically, they don’t want to do it as BJP is indulging in politics. Can’t believe a powerful Home Minister like Amit Shah can’t get that road cleared. If it is opened, there won’t be an issue left for them.”
Hours later, addressing a poll rally at Delhi’s Karkardooma, PM Modi said: “There is a political design behind all these protests. If the protest had been against one law, it would have ended after assurances from the government. But AAP and Congress are provoking people. The Constitution and the Tricolor are being kept in the front to divert attention from the real conspiracy.”
Modi said the people who had raised questions on the surgical strikes by the Army were today “saving those who want to break India into pieces.”
“Be it Seelampur, Jamia or Shaheen Bagh, protests have been held over the past several days regarding the Citizenship Amendment Act. Is this just a coincidence? No. This is an experiment. There is politics behind this
The PM also said people from Bihar were being discriminated against in the national capital. “Bihar CM Nitish Kumar was saying yesterday that buses coming from Patna are not getting permission to enter Delhi. It pains me to see such ill-treatment being meted out to the people of Bihar and Purvanchal,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister then accused the Kejriwal government of blocking central schemes like Lokpal and Ayushman Bharat Yojana in Delhi, saying the CM was “playing politics over the health of Delhi’s citizens.”
He also spoke of regularising colonies, saying those who had never thought they would be able to get a house registered now have homes of their own.
The Shaheen Bagh protests have been on for over six weeks now. On February 1, a man opened fire at the protest site. No one was injured in the incident and the shooter, Kapil Gujjar, was taken into custody. While being led away from the area, Gujjar said: “Hamare desh me aur kisi ki nahi chalegi, sirf Hindu ki chalegi (Only Hindus shall have a say in our country, no one else).”