Rahul, Priyanka Gandhi detained as Congress marches towards Rashtrapati Bhavan
The Delhi Police detained former Congress President Rahul Gandhi, general secretary Priyanka Gandhi, and other party leaders on Friday as they marched towards the Rashtrapati Bhavan to protest unemployment and inflation. Earlier, in the midst of widespread protests, Rahul attacked the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the central government. Section 144 restrictions are in effect in New Delhi owing to the Congress's demonstration.
- The opposition parties, led by the Congress, have repeatedly raised concerns over price rise, unemployment, and increase in the Goods and Service Tax (GST) during the monsoon session of the Parliament.
- The Congress have protested both within and outside the Parliament over these issues.
- Ever since the commencement of the session, the Opposition has attempted to corner the Centre and demanded discussion over inflation.
Speaking at a news conference before the Congress protest, Rahul stated that the BJP and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) now dominate every independent institution in India. "My job is to resist the idea of the RSS, and I am going to do it. The more I do it, the more I will be attacked," he said.
Rahul, while criticizing PM Modi's BJP-led administration at the Centre, said, "Today there is no democracy in India. We are not allowed to speak, we are not allowed to protest, and we get suspended from the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha." "Our country is under the dictatorship, and the democracy has died," he added.
"We are not afraid," he said on the Enforcement Directorate case. "Whatever they [BJP] do won't make any difference. I will continue to do the work to protect our country, its democracy, and brotherhood," he asserted.
Ahead of the protest, the police had informed the party that, except for Jantar Mantar, no protests would be permitted in Delhi as Section 144 is imposed. In a letter to party's Member of Parliament (MP) KC Venugopal, they stated that anyone who breaches it will face action. Congress MPs are scheduled to hold "Chalo Rashtrapati Bhavan," and will participate in "PM House gherao."
The party officials said they would proceed with their planned protest march even though they had not received approval from the police. Party workers have begun arriving at the Congress headquarters in Delhi at 24, Akbar Road. Additionally, the police have kept a close watch, and blocked off the street in front of the party headquarters, where hundreds of workers are apparently gathered.
Delhi | Congress to hold a nationwide protest today over unemployment inflation.— ANI (@ANI) August 5, 2022
Visuals from Akbar Road where barricades put up Police present as workers start arriving near the party office.
Sec 144 CrPC imposed in entire area of New Delhi district, except Jantar Mantar. pic.twitter.com/oQfFmgnuPk
Delhi | Police officials brief security personnel at Vijay Chowk, ahead of Congress' nationwide protest over unemployment inflation— ANI (@ANI) August 5, 2022
Congress announced that the party MPs will hold "Chalo Rashtrapati Bhavan" from Parliament senior leaders will participate in "PM House gherao" pic.twitter.com/fn0mebTM6y
#WATCH | Police detain Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra from outside AICC HQ in Delhi where she had joined other leaders and workers of the party in the protest against unemployment and inflation.— ANI (@ANI) August 5, 2022
The party called a nationwide protest today. pic.twitter.com/JTnWrrAT9T
Due to anticipated congestion on important roads, the police have prepared specific measures, and will recommend diversions of traffic. Meanwhile, the protest coincides with the Enforcement Directorate searching the premises of Herald House and barricading roads leading to Sonia and Rahul Gandhi's homes. Both leaders have been facing money laundering charges, and are being questioned in connection with the National Herald case.