Sharpening its attack on the government over the new three farm laws, the Congress on Thursday staged a strong protest outside the Congress headquarters here after they were prevented from marching towards Rashtrapati Bhawan.
Congress leaders Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and party MPs and leaders staged a sit-in protest outside their office and were detained by the Delhi Police for violating prohibitory orders.
Congress leaders had planned a protest march from Vijay Chowk to Rashtrapati Bhavan to submit a memorandum containing 2 crore signatures to President Ram Nath Kovind seeking his intervention over farmers' protest.
Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi and other senior leaders march in support of #FarmersProtest against the new agri laws.— The New Indian Express (@NewIndianXpress) December 24, 2020
Express photos | @Shekharyadav02.@TheMornStandard pic.twitter.com/6b2pYFLUX6
However, the Delhi Police imposed section 144 CrPC around the Rashtrapati Bhawan, including the Congress office. "No permission has been granted for Congress' march to Rashtrapati Bhavan today. However, three leaders, who have appointments at Rashtrapati Bhavan, will be allowed to go," said Deepak Yadav, Additional District Commissioner of Police, New Delhi.
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, K C Venugopal, Randeep Surjewala among other Congress leaders were detained for violating prohibitory orders after they staged the protest and were taken to Mandir Marg Police Station in New Delhi.
Farmers need to be respected, it is a sin to brand them anti-nationals, said Priyanka after she was stopped by the police. She also termed the Central government as arrogant and said it is doing only its own politics and has no respect for farmers and jawans.
Senior Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury who had apppointments met President Ram Nath Kovind to seek withdrawal of the farm laws. "I want to tell the PM that these farmers are not going to go back home until these farm laws are repealed. Govt should convene a joint session of Parliament and take back these laws. Opposition parties stand with farmers & labourers, " said Rahul after the meeting.
"Condemn the actions of Delhi police in detaining the members of Congress delegation including Priyanka ji, MPs & CWC members. Govt is trying to suppress the voice of farmers & stifle the opposition, who are supporting the farmers' agitation, which is totally undemocratic", said Congress-ruled Rajasthan's CM Ashok Gehlot.
(With inputs from Agencies)