New Delhi: More than 72 hours after riots broke out in parts of Delhi, the Opposition came out with its first reaction on Wednesday as Congress president Sonia Gandhi addressed a rare, structured press conference, seeking the resignation of Union home minister Amit Shah for the violence. The CPI(M) and the NCP also asked him to resign taking responsibility for the violence.
The Congress will march to the President’s House on Thursday and put forward their demands on the situation in Delhi. Opposi-tion leaders including Samajwadi Party’s Akhil-esh Yadav, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yech-ury and those from DMK and NCP have also sought time from President Ram Nath Kovind.
On Wednesday, the Con-gress’ Delhi unit organis-ed a peace march from AICC headquarters. Sen-ior party leaders joined the march. It was stopped at Janpath, where they sat on dharna.
Earlier, the Congress Working Committee (CWC) met and it observed a minute’s silence over the deaths in Delhi, following which Mrs Gandhi addressed the press, alleging there was a “well-planned” conspiracy behind the violence.
“After reviewing the situation, the CWC is of the firm opinion that what has happened in Delhi is a colossal failure of duty for which the entire responsibility must be borne by the Central government and particularly the home minister and calls upon the home minister to tender his resignation immediately,” she said, reading out the CWC resolution.
She also attacked the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) asserting that Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his government are “equally responsible for not activating the administration” to reach out to the people to maintain peace and harmony.
“It is the collective failure of the two governments that has resulted in a great tragedy in the capital city which threatens to become worse by the day,” she read out from the CWC resolution.
Mrs Gandhi also called out BJP leader Kapil Mishra for his statement which she claimed incited the violence in the city.
“The conspiracy was witnessed during Delhi polls and BJP leaders gave hate speeches creating an atmosphere of fear and hatred. On Sunday, a BJP leader has given inflammatory speech by giving a three-day ultimatum to Delhi Police,” she said.
The BJP hit back. It accused the Congress president of “dirty politics” by targeting the Modi government over violence in Delhi.
Union minister Prakash Javadekar said Mrs Gandhi was politicising the violence.
He also took a swipe at the Congress saying those whose hands are “tainted with the bloods of innocent Sikhs” are now talking about checking violence, a reference to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.
Addressing Congress workers while she sat on dharna, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra accused the Centre of having failed to maintain peace in the national capital.
She also accused the government of having “destroyed” Delhi, where people from across the country come to seek employment.
The CPI (M) demanded that the Army be immediately be called in to contain the situation.
“There is nothing spontaneous about the violence. On Sunday, local BJP leader, Kapil Mishra, made a provocative speech in the presence of a senior police officer at Jaffarabad, threatening to remove anti-CAA protesters. Yet, the police was unprepared to meet the situation,” the CPI(M) Polit Bureau said in a statement.
CPI General Secretary D Raja said: “The line of “Raj Dharma” is being violated in Delhi now”....