Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], January 6 (ANI): Calling Prime Minister Narendra Modi's security lapse in Punjab "preplanned" and holding the Congress-led government in Punjab responsible for the same, Minister of State for External Affairs and Parliamentary Affairs, V Muraleedharan on Thursday said that political rivalry should not result in personal enmity.
"It wasn't just a security lapse but was preplanned by Congress and its government in Punjab, as they hate PM Modi. This shows they can go to any extent to stop him. Political rivalry should not result in personal enmity," Muraleedharan said to reporters today.
PM Modi, who landed in Punjab's Bathinda on January 5 and had to take the road route to Hussainiwala in Ferozepur because of rains, was stuck on a flyover for 15-20 minutes due to a blockade by some farmers, an incident the Union Home Ministry described as a "major lapse" in his security.
The ministry has sought a detailed report from the State government.
PM Modi was scheduled to visit Ferozepur on Wednesday to lay the foundation stone of multiple development projects worth more than Rs 42,750 crore. The Home Ministry said in a statement that PM Modi landed at Bathinda on Wednesday morning from where he was to go to the National Martyrs Memorial at Hussainiwala by helicopter.
Due to rain and poor visibility, the Prime Minister waited for about 20 minutes for the weather to clear out.
The statement said that when the weather did not improve, it was decided that he would visit the National Martyrs Memorial via road, which would take more than two hours. The Prime Minister proceeded to travel by road after necessary confirmation of necessary security arrangements by the DGP Punjab Police.
Around 30 kilometers away from the National Martyrs Memorial in Hussainiwala, when the Prime Minister's convoy reached a flyover, it was found that the road was blocked by some protestors. The Prime Minister was stuck on a flyover for 15-20 minutes.
"This was a major lapse in the security of the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister's schedule and travel plan was communicated well in advance to the Punjab Government. As per procedure, they have to make necessary arrangements for logistics, security as well as keep a contingency plan ready," the statement said.
"Also in view of the contingency plan, the Punjab Government has to deploy additional security to secure any movement by road, which were clearly not deployed. After this security lapse, it was decided to head back to Bathinda Airport," it added.
Government sources said what was witnessed on the flyover was "a surprising scene of connivance between Punjab police and so-called protestors". They said only Punjab police knew the precise route of the PM and "never has such police behavior been witnessed". (ANI)