New Delhi: Congress chief Rahul Gandhi hit out at the BJP which leads the government in Haryana, where anti-“Padmaavat” protesters attacked a bus carrying school children, alleging that the party’s use of “hatred and violence” is setting the country on fire.
Read Also: ‘Padmaavat’ release row: Mob pelts stones at school bus in Gurgaon
The Congress President also condemned the violence against children by the mobs which have been protesting the release of the controversial film.
“There will never be a cause big enough to justify violence against children. Violence and hatred are the weapons of the weak. The BJP’s use of hatred and violence is setting our entire country on fire,” Gandhi tweeted.
The opposition party also slammed the BJP government in Haryana over its “failure” to maintain law and order in the state.
Around 20-25 students of a leading Gurgaon school had a narrow escape when a frenzied mob attacked their bus, a day ahead of the controversial film’s scheduled release.
Congress’s communications in-charge Randeep Surjewala took to Twitter to term the attack as “unacceptable” and “reprehensible” that endangered the lives of children.
“Unacceptable, reprehensible and devastating as vandals attack school bus and Haryana Roadways bus in Gurgaon endangering the lives of innocent children and passengers.”
“Terrified children cry inconsolably and anarchy prevails. Khattar Govt fails again miserably in upholding law and order (sic),” he tweeted.
The students were on their way home when a group of around 60 protesters, believed to be members of a fringe group, attacked their bus with bamboo sticks asking the driver to stop the vehicle. The miscreants also pelted the bus with stones.
Violent protestors also torched a bus in Sohna, where they pelted a fire tender with stones and forced it back when it came to douse the fire, local officials said.
Despite prohibitory orders in Gurgaon, hundreds of Shree Rajput Karni Sena supporters protested at the Kherki Daula toll plaza on the Delhi-Jaipur National Highway.
Violence spread to towns and cities in many states including Rajasthan, Haryana, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh, a day ahead of the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s film, as fringe groups opposing it remained defiant.
Ayodhya on high alert following intelligence inputs
Ayodhya: Amid VIP movements, Ayodhya has been put on high alert soon after intelligence inputs indicated a possible terror attack in the city.
“We have put more force into action. The force has been alerted. Also, intelligence officials in the civil dress have come here. They are checking all hotels, restaurants and railway stations. The police force is vigilant and keeping a track of all the movements,” Anil Kumar Sisodia, Superintendent of Police City, told ANI.
This comes ahead of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray’s visit to Ayodhya on Sunday along with his party MPs.
According to reports, the security has also been heightened keeping in mind the hearing on 2005 Ram Janmabhoomi attack on June 18.
Seven died while cleaning hotel sewer in Vadodara
Vadodara: Seven persons, including four sanitation workers, died due to asphyxiation on Saturday while cleaning sewer of a hotel in Gujarat’s Vadodara district, officials said.
The incident happened at a hotel in Fartikui village in Dabhoi tehsil, about 30 km from Vadodara city. Three employees of the hotel were also among those killed.
“When one sanitation worker failed to come out of the manhole, others went inside. All of them died due to asphyxiation,” district collector Kiran Zaveri told PTI.
Manmohan retires from Rajya Sabha
New Delhi: For the first time in 28 years, former prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh’s name ceased to be part of the list of members of the Rajya Sabha on its Web site, and was included in the list of former members of Parliament.
With the Congress lacking the numbers in the Assam legislature to ensure his re-election, 86-year-old Dr Singh retired from the Rajya Sabha.
Dr Singh, then finance minister in the P V Narasimha Rao government, had debuted in the House on October 1, 1991, from Assam and represented the state for five consecutive terms. He was the leader of the House during his 10 years as PM, and leader of the Opposition from 1998 to 2004.The former PM would now need to wait for the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, an ally of the Congress, to send him to the Rajya Sabha next month or until the next biennial elections in the Upper House in April 2020 when 54 MPs retire.
Five Rajya Sabha members from Tamil Nadu retire in July. The DMK, along with its allies, has the strength in the state legislature to get at least three elected to the Rajya Sabha. It has promised one seat to MDMK chief Vaiko.
However, sources said the DMK and the Congress have not had any discussions on the issue.
The Congress could also hope to send Dr Singh to the Upper House from Gujarat if elections to fill the two vacancies from the state take place together.
The vacancies are on account of two Bharatiya Janata Party Rajya Sabha members from Gujarat, Amit Anilchandra Shah and Smriti Zubin Irani, being elected to the Lok Sabha. Shah has debuted in the Lok Sabha from Gandhinagar while Irani is the Lok Sabha member from Amethi in Uttar Pradesh.
The Congress’s numbers in the Gujarat assembly would ensure the party wins one of the two seats, the other going to the BJP, if elections to the two seats are held jointly.