New Delhi, Aug. 8 (ANI
): Criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi
's "shoot me" statement in Hyderabad last evening, the Congress Party
on Monday said this reflects the former's helplessness in controlling atrocities on Dalits and added he cannot solve their problems. Mallikarjun Kharge
, who is the Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha, demanded a statement from Prime Minister Modi and a discussion on the issue in Parliament.
"We have submitted a notice in 'Zero Hour', seeking Prime Minister Modi's clarification on atrocities against Dalits. We wanted a discussion under Rule 193 of the Business Advisory Committee on the issues in the Lok Sabha
, but we were not allowed. Besides, they did not give us even two minutes to raise all these issues in the House that is why we staged a walkout," Kharge told reporters outside Parliament.
"The Prime Minister has become so weak that he is now asking perpetrators of Dalit atrocities to shoot him and attack him instead of controlling chief ministers of the BJP-ruled states, where such incidents are rampant. It is for the first time that a Prime Minister is saying that it is difficult to control this, and hence, shoot him. What message it sends? It sends the message that even the Prime Minister is helpless in solving this problem. Thus, we demand a statement from the Prime Minister and want a discussion on this issue in the House," he added.
"When Members of Parliament, who are elected by the people, raise some questions in the House, they must get their answers there only. You can say whatever you want to say outside Parliament, it's your right, but when a member raises a question in the House, replying to their questions is your duty," said the Congress leader taking a dig at the Prime Minister for making statements at the TownHall meeting in Delhi and BJP workers' meeting in Hyderabad, instead of making a statement in Parliament.
Kharge then went on to list cases of Dalit atrocities in various parts of the country, including Rohith Vemula, IIT Madras, Delta Meghwal, while demanding a statement regarding ending reservations for Dalits etc.
"The Prime Minister has so many powers, can't he stop atrocities on Dalits and Muslims. If the Prime Minister would have wanted, he could have changed things in moments, but instead of making a statement in Parliament, he chose to talk about it outside," he added.
"All these have a bad impact on the Dalit community, and what the Prime Minister is doing apart from shedding crocodile tears? If the Prime Minister, who represents 130 crores people, cannot protect the small and weaker Dalit community, what can he do," he sought to know.
When asked if it was a very calculated move by the Prime Minister in view of assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat and other states, Kharge said, "We don't want politics on the issue. But he is shedding crocodile tears and sympathising with the Dalits to show them that his government is their caretaker and concerned about them. But show-offs won't do anything; he will have to take concrete action. They have their governments at the Centre and in various states, and whenever their leaders speak in Parliament, they talk about the Modi government and not the BJP government. When Modi is everywhere, why he is not for the Dalits?"
Stating that people know whether his statement was directed at polls or he wanted to sympathise with the Dalit community, Kharge added that they would decide the future course of action on the issue after consultation with the party high command.
The Congress members earlier staged a walkout from the Parliament demanding discussion on the issue. (ANI