NEW DELHI: Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Monday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi and home minister Amit Shah of misleading people on the amended Citizenship Act and the NRC, and remaining “insensitive to state suppression and violence”.
Addressing a meeting of the opposition attended by leaders of 20 parties, Gandhi said there have been nationwide spontaneous protests by youths supported by citizens from all walks of life.
“The immediate cause is the CAA and NRC but they reflect widespread frustration and pent up anger, which is now out in the open. The response of the police in UP and Delhi has been shockingly partisan and brutal,” the Congress chief said.
“The Prime Minister and Home Minister have misled the people. They have contradicted their own statements of only weeks ago, and continue with their provocative statements while remaining insensitive to the state suppression and violence that is increasingly becoming commonplace,” she said.
Hours after BuzzFeed News’ editor-in-chief Ben Smith posted a tweet quoting him on the CAA, Microsoft’s global CEO Satya Nadella issued a more nuanced statement on the subject. “I’m shaped by my Indian heritage. My hope is for an India where an immigrant can aspire to found a prosperous start-up or lead a MNC benefitting the economy at large,” he Nadella said.
The schedule for election of the new president will be released soon, party sources said and expressed confidence that Nadda will be elected unopposed. This will bring to an end Amit Shah’s tenure as party chief after he succeeded Rajnath Singh in July 2014. Shah was elected to a second 3-year term in January 2016 after he completed Singh’s interrupted term.
The “Modi-Shah government stands totally exposed” for its inability to govern and to provide security to the people, Gandhi alleged.The nation has watched in horror at the “BJP-orchestrated assault” on JNU after what happened in Jamia, BHU, Allahabad university and AMU, she said
Asserting that the NRC seems to have back-fired in Assam, Gandhi said the Modi-Shah government is now focusing on the NPR exercise that is scheduled to begin in a few months. Contrary to the assertions of the Home Minister, it is clear that this is being done to lead to a nationwide NRC, she claimed.
Stating that the real issue facing India today is the collapse of economic activity, she alleged that the Prime Minister and the home minister have no answers and want to divert the nation’s attention from “this grim reality by raising one divisive and polarizing issue after another”.
NCP supremo Sharad Pawar, Left leaders Sitaram Yechury and D Raja, JMM leader and Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren, LJD chief Sharad Yadav, Rashtriya Lok Samata Party leader Upendra Kushwaha, RJD leader Manoj Jha, National Conference leader Hasnain Masoodi, besides Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Ahmed Patel and former prime minister Manmohan Singh were among those present.
The BSP, TMC and AAP stayed away from the opposition meet