Police at Rahul Gandhis door: Cong leaders question rule, delay in action

Police at Rahul Gandhi's door: Cong leaders question rule, delay in action

The Congress has slammed the BJP-led Centre over Delhi Police’s visit to party leader Rahul Gandhi’s residence on Sunday (March 19) morning to question him in connection with a speech on “sexual harassment” victims he made during the Bharat Jodo Yatra.

Delhi Police had earlier sent a notice to Gandhi, seeking information on the speech.

The official Twitter handle of Congress said the police visit to 12 Tughlaq Lane was a fallout of the party’s questions on Adani. “Bharat Jodo Yatra and Rahul Gandhi gave a safe space to millions of women to walk freely, voice their concerns & share their pain. Delhi Police’s cheap theatrics prove how rattled Mr Modi is with our questions on Adani. This harassment deepens our conviction to seek answers,” it said.

“Why after 45 days?”

Though Special CP (L&O) Sagar Preet Hooda said the police team wanted to talk to the Wayanad MP so that they could get details from him and justice can be given to the victims, Congress MP Jairam Ramesh questioned the delay.

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“It has been 45 days since Bharat Jodo Yatra ended. They (Delhi Police) are going for questioning after 45 days. If they are so much concerned, why didn’t they go to him in February? Rahul Gandhi’s legal team will respond to it as per law,” ANI quoted Ramesh as saying.

Gandhi made the speech in question during the conclusion of the Yatra in Srinagar on January 30. He had shared an anecdote about his interaction with a woman who had apparently claimed to have been gangraped. “In one particular case, I asked a girl — she had been raped — I asked her, ‘Should we call the police?’ She said that ‘don’t call the police, then I will be shamed’,” the police have quoted Gandhi as saying in that speech.

“Under which rule?”

Congress leader Pawan Khera asked what has so far been done in the many rape incidents, including those in Hathras and Kathua, that have come to light. He alleged that it is only an attempt by the Centre to “intimidate” Gandhi to keep him from speaking out. “What does this show? That this is a disconcerted government…Police never threatens; the government sitting behind it does,” he told reporters.

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“Under which rule are the police coming to Rahul Gandhi’s residence to take details of Bharat Jodo Yatra, which got over 45 days back? The government thinks whenever they want, they can send the police to our residences?” Khera told the media outside Gandhi’s residence.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said police could not have shown “such audacity” without Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s order. “Without Amit Shah’s order, it is not possible that police could show such audacity to enter the house of a national leader without any reason. Rahul Gandhi said he has received the notice and he will reply to it but still, the police went to his house,” Gehlot told reporters. He added that the nation was “watching” and they (BJP) “will never be forgiven”.

Special CP(L&O) Hooda later said Gandhi had asked for some time to give them the required information. “He said he needs some time and will give us the information which we’ve asked for. Today we’ve served a notice, which has been accepted by his office and, if questioning needs to be done, then we will do it,” ANI quoted him as saying.

(With agency inputs)

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