Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh (File pic)
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh (File pic)

Amarinder Singh flays UP govt over not letting Rahul, Priyanka meet CAA protest victims' kin

ANI | Updated: Dec 24, 2019 19:21 IST

Chandigarh (Punjab) [India], Dec 24 (ANI): Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Tuesday condemned Uttar Pradesh government's action in stopping Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra from crossing into Meerut to meet the families of the victims of the anti-CAA protests.
"Rahul and Priyanka were travelling to Meerut not to protest but to share the grief of the kin of those killed in the recent police excesses on protestors. Reports indicate that the Congress leaders had even offered to go in groups of three, instead of collectively, but were prevented from entering Meerut," Singh said.
The Chief Minister earlier tweeted: "Strongly condemn the UP govt's decision to stop @RahulGandhi & @priyanakgandhi from travelling into Meerut to meet the families of the victims of the #CAAProtests. What India needs at this moment is a healing touch and not such curbs against opposition parties. #NRC_CAA_Protests."
"Protest is the democratic right of every citizen of India but the UP government has been acting in a draconian manner to crack the whip on protesting citizens as if they were terrorists or gangsters," he added
He said such extreme reaction from a democratically elected state government speaks of vindictive politics against a particular community, which strikes at the very foundation of India's constitutional ethos.
The Punjab Chief Minister urged the UP government to exercise restraint in dealing with the situation triggered by the anti-CAA protests. "As leaders of elected governments in states, it is our duty to maintain law and order, but the Constitution does not give us the mandate to use excessive violence to counter the protests," he added.
At the same time, Singh said that it was important for the citizens to ensure that they do not cross the line and keep their protests peaceful. Damage to national property is not the answer to any problem, he stressed, urging people not to vent their anger on public property.
Both the leaders were stopped by the UP Police outside the limits of Meerut after which they decided to head back to the national capital.
In the violent protests which erupted in Meerut last week, two persons were killed and a police post was set on fire. In a bid to nab those who led the violence in the city during a protest against the newly-enacted citizenship law, Uttar Pradesh police on Monday issued posters with pictures of the rioters.
Protests erupted in several parts of the country, including Uttar Pradesh, over the newly-enacted citizenship law, which grants citizenship to Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Parsis, Buddhists, and Christians fleeing religious persecution from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh who came to India on or before December 31, 2014. (ANI)