Delhi violence: Rise above partisan politics to restore peace, Cong to Modi, Kejriwal
New Delhi, Feb. 25 (PTI): Condemning the violence in Delhi, the Congress on Tuesday demanded that the prime minister, the home minister and the Delhi chief minister come forward to ensure peace and maintain brotherhood while rising above partisan politics.
“This is the India of Gandhi, Nehru and Patel. Can any Indian accept this mindless violence? The Congress appeals to the people of Delhi to maintain communal harmony and thwart all attempts of forces dividing the country on the basis of religion,” party’s chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala told reporters.
Unabated violence and incidents of stone-pelting and murder in the national capital have shattered the nation, he said, while referring to the riots in northeast Delhi over the citizenship amendment act that continued for the third day, and demanded stern action against the culprits.
“Our appeal to the prime minister, the home minister and the Delhi chief minister is that can you rise to the occasion, leave aside your political partisanship and views, and become really not leaders of your parties but leaders of the society so that harmony, peace and non-violence prevail,” he said.
He said that in the present scenario, the people of this country expect them to come forward while rising above party politics to ensure that brotherhood in the society remains intact.
“While following the path shown by Gandhi Ji, they should lead peace march; they should talk to leaders of all communities to establish peace on the ground so that this mindless violence is stopped. In this regard the responsibility of establishing peace lies with newly elected Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Home Minister Amit Shah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” he said.
The Congress will stand with the Centre and the Delhi government in every way to maintain brotherhood and harmony in the society, he said.
“Do not fail this country because you belong to different political parties,” Surjewala said, adding this was a sincere appeal “on behalf of people of Delhi and the country” to Modi, Shah and Kejriwal.
“There is no place for violence in Gandhi Ji’s India… Today there is a need to establish peace on the ground and maintain brotherhood,” he said.
The Congress leader said when a foreign dignitary is on a visit to the country, the Union government, the state government and the police are expected to be on full alert but it is surprising that instead of showing additional vigilance, the Ministry of Home Affairs and the newly elected Delhi government is conveniently oblivious of the violence, arson, stone-pelting and murders in the city.
“It seems that law and order in Delhi has been handed over to the miscreants. Such violence has no place in India of Gandhi Ji. We cannot allow the capital Delhi and this country to be at the ransom of communal and divisive forces,” he said.
“The people of Delhi are very intelligent, but, certain communal forces with political interests are trying to divide the society and polarize the people on religious lines.
“We had warned the people on this count in the past as well and you might remember that a conspiracy was being hatched to brand Delhi as ‘Dangonwali Delhi’. Our words in this regard have come true today,” he said.
Surjewala said the party also prays for the speedy recovery of DCP Amit Sharma and the hundreds of other people who have been injured in the violence.
“We also condemn the firing at three journalists Arvind Gunasekar, Saurabh Shukla and Akash and pray for their good health,” he said.
“We strongly condemn these brutal riots and demand that the culprits be identified and stern action taken against them and the miscreants. The Congress mourns the death of Head Constable Ratan Lal and others in the violence,” Surjewala said.
He said the Congress appeals to the people of Delhi and the country to defeat the designs of communal forces while maintaining communal harmony.
“We condemn these violent riots and demand that the real culprits, miscreants and those spreading violence are identified and strong action is taken against them,” the Congress leaders said.
He also condemned the firing at three Journalists who had gone to cover this agitation and wished them early recovery.
Congress leader Anand Sharma on Twitter said, “Distressing third day of #DelhiRiots, resulting in loss of life and injuries to many civilians and policemen. Nation’s capital can not be allowed to descend into chaos and anarchy. Both HM and CM have a responsibility of ensuring that the situation does not deteriorate further.”
He urged all political leaders to exercise restraint in speech and not inflame passions and bring an end to the violence.
Sharma also appealed to all community leaders and social organizations to step out and provide a healing touch to restore harmony and peace.
Party leader Ahmed Patel said there had been a complete breakdown of law and order in the national capital.
“Govt of India sits mute as the capital of India burns.
There is a complete break down of law and order. Ineptitude and incompetence of this government have led to houses burnt and lives lost. We urge the government to use its might to bring peace to Delhi and bring justice on all elements responsible,” he tweeted.
Delhi LG appeals for peace
Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal on Tuesday appealed to the people to help the police and security agencies in restoring peace and maintaining law and order and communal harmony in the city.
He also attended a high-level meeting with Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Union Home Minister Amit Shah. The meeting resolved to enhance police-MLA coordination, quell rumour-mongering and reactivate peace committees in various localities of the city.
In his address to the first session of the 7th Delhi Assembly, Baijal appealed people to maintain peace, law and order and communal harmony, and cooperate with security agencies in the wake of violence in parts of northeast Delhi over the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).
The Lt Governor also met injured civilians and policemen at GTB hospital in Shahdara and Max hospital in Patparganj.
Pvt., govt. schools to continue to remain closed on Wednesday
Private and government schools in violence-affected North East Delhi will continue to be closed on Wednesday, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia announced on Tuesday.
Sisodia, who is also the education minister of Delhi, said all internal examinations have been postponed by schools.
“In violence-affected North East district, schools will be closed tomorrow as well. Internal examinations have been postponed. Have requested CBSE to postpone the board exam as well,” Sisodia tweeted.
There was no response from the CBSE on whether the exam will be postponed or not.
Smoke billowed in the air and mobs roamed unchecked through the streets, burning shops, pelting stones and threatening locals, as fresh violence tore through northeast Delhi, killing six more people on Tuesday and taking the toll in the communal clashes over the amended citizenship law to 11.
As tension smouldered in the national capital’s northeast and the sunset over another restive day, violence cut a swathe through several localities, including Chand Bagh and Bhajanpura, with stones and other missiles hurled and shops set ablaze.
Sisodia had on Monday announced that schools will be closed on Tuesday. He had also spoken to HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ and requested him to postpone the board examination for the particular district.
However, CBSE had clarified that there is no examination centre in North East Delhi for exams on Tuesday so no rescheduling was needed.
“It is informed that as per schedule tomorrow there are exams only for class XII in four vocational subjects in 18 centres in the Western part of Delhi. There are no centres in the northeast part of Delhi for exams scheduled tomorrow,” a CBSE spokesperson had said.
Chennai journalists condemn Delhi violence
Journalists on Tuesday staged a protest here against the alleged attack on journalists in Delhi covering the violence over the support and opposition to the Citizenship Amendment Act.
Raising slogans, journalists demanded the authorities provide safety and security to newsmen.
Also, they wanted Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami to ensure the security of reporters and photojournalists from the state working in the national capital by taking the matter up with the Centre.
One of the journalists, who faced the mob fury was Arvind Gunasekar from the state, they said.
They wanted the Central government and the Delhi police to take swift action.
A journalist with JK 24X7 News received a bullet injury and two reporters from NDTV were allegedly beaten and punched by rioters in northeast Delhi, which was wracked by fresh violence on Tuesday.
Akash sustained a bullet injury while covering the clashes in Maujpur locality and is in a hospital where his condition is serious, said a tweet from JK 24X7 channel.
NDTV said its journalist Arvind Gunasekar was hit by rioters while he was at one of the spots in northeast Delhi and lost a tooth. His fellow reporter Saurah, who tried to shield him, was punched, it said.