Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi on Wednesday expressed regret after Prime Minister Narendra Modi had to cut short his visit to the state, but asserted that there was no security lapse.
Modi, who landed in Bathinda and had to take the road route to Hussainiwala in Ferozepur because of the inclement weather, was stuck on a flyover for 15-20 minutes due to blockade by some protesters, an incident the Union Home Ministry described as a “major lapse” in his security.
The prime minister had to visit for the inauguration and address a political rally. We regret that he had to return due to blockade en route, Channi told reporters here.
“After all, he is the prime minister of the country. We respect him. There is a democratic system and federal system,” said Channi.
His remarks came as the BJP and Congress hit out at each other over the issue.
Channi claimed there was no security lapse of any kind and there was no situation of any attack.
He said there was a sudden change in the prime minister’s programme and the BJP should not politicise the issue.
In a statement, the Union Home Ministry said that after the “major security lapse” in the prime minister’s travel in Punjab, his convoy decided to return.
The ministry also asked the Punjab government to fix responsibility for the lapse and take strict action, the statement said.