Sonia leads Cong delegation to Prez Kovind over Delhi violence, demands Home Minister Amit Shah's removal
New Delhi/IBNS: A day after taking the reign of her party to level charges against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the Delhi violence that claimed 35 lives so far, Congress interim chief Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday led a delegation of her outfit to President Ram Nath Kovind and reiterated her demands of the removal of Union Home Minister Amit Shah from his office.
Submitting a memorandum to Kovind, Gandhi outside the President's House blamed the "inaction" of the Home Minister and the central government for the riots which went on for 48 hours between Monday morning and Tuesday night.
In the letter, which was read out by Gandhi who was accompanied by a number of senior leaders including former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the Congress said, "Due to the complete inaction on the part of the Home Minister and the central government, the violence has claimed the lives of at least 34 (now 35) people and over 200 have been injured at last count.
Several crores of properties and business have fallen prey to unchecked arson and looting."
"Rashtrapati ji, you are given the highest possible responsibility under the Constitution of India to act as the conscious-keeper of this government and to remind it of its constitutional duties and the pillar of rajdharm by which any government must abide."
Gandhi's Congress party has also urged the President to remove the Home Minister from his office for his "abdication of duty" and "inability to contain the situation".
Congress delegation led by Congress President Smt. Sonia Gandhi & Former PM Dr. Manmohan Singh meet with the Honourable President of India, to present a memorandum on the Delhi violence. pic.twitter.com/jAzyh0fEvy— Congress (@INCIndia) February 27, 2020
The riot was preceded by a clash between the supporters and protestors of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), which aims to grant citizenship to Hindu, Sikh, Christian, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi but not Muslim refugees who came to India from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan due to religious persecution before 2015.
Heat of politics in national capital over Justice Muralidhar's transfer
Delhi High Court Judge Justice S Muralidhar, who came down hard upon the Centre, the Delhi government and police over the violence in the national capital a day ago, was transferred to Punjab and Haryana High Court on Wednesday night.
The notification of Justice Muralidhar's transfer, which was recommended by the Supreme Court collegium on Feb 12, was issued at 11 pm on Wednesday.
Slamming the central and Delhi governments, Justice Muralidhar on Wednesday said the court cannot let another 1984 riot, which took place after the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, to happen.
The High Court judge also asked the central and Delhi government to work together to combat the violence in the national capital.
The court also criticised the provocative statements by several BJP leaders over the last few months including the latest one by former MLA Kapil Mishra who had threatened to take action if blocked roads due to the anti-CAA protests were not cleared by police within three days.
Congress, BJP fight over Judge's transfer
Congress on Thursday was quick to accuse the ruling dispensation of pressurising the judiciary in the case.
At a press conference in the morning, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said, "BJP's pressure against judiciary and politics of revenge stand exposed. Yesterday, judges S Muralidhar and Talwant Singh of Delhi HC bench, took note of BJP leaders role in riots, filed an FIR against them and ordered Delhi Police to act in accordance with Constitution."
"When the judges showed provocative videos of BJP's Union Minister, MP, MLA and Kapil Mishra, Tushar Mehta ji, a lawyer of the Central Government and a favourite of Modi ji, argued that, 'it is not the right time to file cases against the named offenders'," added the Congress leader.
Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra tweeted, "The midnight transfer of Justice Muralidhar isn’t shocking given the current dispensation, but it is certianly sad & shameful. Millions of Indians have faith in a resilient & upright judiciary, the government’s attempts to muzzle justice & break their faith are deplorable."
The midnight transfer of Justice Muralidhar isn’t shocking given the current dispensation, but it is certianly sad & shameful.— Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (@priyankagandhi) February 27, 2020
Millions of Indians have faith in a resilient & upright judiciary, the government’s attempts to muzzle justice & break their faith are deplorable. pic.twitter.com/KKt4IeAMyv
BJP refutes Congress charge, calls 'routine transfer'
Union Law Minister and senior BJP leader Ravishankar Prasad tweeted, "Transfer of Hon’ble Justice Muralidhar was done pursuant to the recommendation dated 12.02.2020 of the Supreme Court collegium headed by Chief Justice of India. While transferring the judge consent of the judge is taken. The well settled process have been followed."
"By politicising a routine transfer, Congress has yet again displayed its scant regard for the judiciary. People of India have rejected Congress Party and hence it is hell bent on destroying the very institutions India cherishes by constantly attacking them"
By politicising a routine transfer, Congress has yet again displayed its scant regard for the judiciary. People of India have rejected Congress Party and hence it is hell bent on destroying the very institutions India cherishes by constantly attacking them.— Ravi Shankar Prasad (@rsprasad) February 27, 2020