"Forces Within Government" Behind Red Fort Violence, Says Congress

Participating in the debate on the motion thanking the President for his address to Parliament, Congress leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury demanded that a Joint Parliamentary Committee probe be held to uncover the "big conspiracy".

'Forces Within Government' Behind Red Fort Violence, Says Congress

Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury says the centre wants to create fear among the farmers. (File)

New Delhi:

The Congress has alleged in Lok Sabha that the government had sent "vandals" to Red Fort to "desecrate" the monument and defame the ongoing farmers'' agitation, and demanded that a JPC probe be held to uncover the "big conspiracy".

Participating in the debate on the motion thanking the President for his address to Parliament, Congress leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury also demanded a similar investigation by a Joint Parliamentary Committee into the alleged TRP scam and purported chats of a television anchor that have allegedly been linked to Balakot airstrikes.

Mr Chowdhury asked the government as to why it was "so much afraid" of a teenaged climate-activist, Greta Thunberg, that it engaged the whole machinery to counter her tweets supporting the farmers' agitation against the three agricultural laws.

"With such a strong Home Minister like Amit Shah, how can some people reach the Red Fort, that too on January 26 when the highest level of security was in place in Delhi. Why isn't there a proper investigation into it. It is actually a big, well-planned conspiracy to defame the farmers. The fact is that you have sent some vandals to the Red Fort to create vandalism. Forces within the government are behind it," he alleged.

He was referring to the Republic Day incident during the farmers' tractor rally when hundreds of protesters had reached the Red Fort, hoisted a religious flag on the ramparts and clashed with the police.

The Congress leader said a JPC probe should be instituted so that it can go into the details of the alleged conspiracy and find out the truth.

"You have trapped the farmers. You have filed cases one after another against the farmers. You want to create fear among the farmers. You want to create a rift between Punjab and other states," he claimed in the House when Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi were in attendance.

Mr Chowdhury likened the current situation in Delhi with Kabul, Baghdad and Syria, saying that barricades, barbed wire and nails have been put in and around the sites of the farmer protests at Delhi's borders.

"The whole world is discussing about India. Your action is bringing disrepute to India. Why are you so much afraid of an 18-year-old Greta (Thunberg). Why are you making Greta persona non grata? You have misguided (former test captain) Sachin Tendulkar, (music legend) Lata Mangeshkar," he said, referring to their tweets.

Mr Chowdhury alleged that the central government had earlier conspired against the Muslims and now against the farmers.

"Farmers are at Delhi's borders. More than 200 farmers have lost their lives. Why is the prime minister not talking to them? Why this arrogance? You have a majority and you are trying to bulldoze through your majority. Don't insult the farmers, don't wage a war against the farmers. Are they your enemy?" he said.

The Congress leader said that the government did not convene the winter session citing the coronavirus pandemic.

"We should not be afraid of debate. Dissent, disagreement and dialogue are the hallmark of our civilisation. Mahatma Gandhi had once said farmers are the kings. Given a chance, I would make a farmer the Governor-General," he said.

Taking a dig at BJP leaders, Mr Chowdhury said it is one thing to take someone's name and it is another matter to practically follow his ideology.

"The BJP is bereft of any national icon. You are borrowing the national icons. There is nothing wrong in borrowing. But try to understand and comprehend these icons. You often take the name of Netaji (Subhash Chandra Bose). But why not take the names of (Jawaharlal) Nehru or Indira Gandhi. This reflects your pettiness," he claimed.