More than 30 MPs left for Hathras in Uttar Pradesh this afternoon along with ex-Congress chief Rahul Gandhi who is on his way way to meet the family of the 20-year-old woman after her alleged gang rape and torture triggered widespread protests across the nation; she died at a hospital in Delhi on Tuesday.
Mr Gandhi and his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra left from Delhi some time back in a car, two days after both the Congress leaders were stopped while marching to the village where the victim’s family lives.
Visuals this afternoon showed Ms Vadra driving the car and Rahul Gandhi, wearing a white kurta and mask, sitting beside her. However, both of them h stopped near the UP-Delhi border. The police later allowed them to go, but stressed that only five leaders would be allowed.
Several Congress MPs, in separate vehicles, are headed to Hathras.
— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) October 3, 2020
In a tweet, Congress MP Shashi Tharoor shared his picture, behind the wheels and wrote: “Heading to Hathras! #SatyagrahaForOurDaughters.”
Earlier today, Congress MP Ghulam Nabi Azad had attacked the UP government over the tussle between Rahul Gandhi and UP cops on Thursday.
“Leadership and its mindset have been demonstrated by what all is happening,” Mr Azad said. Rahul Gandhi was pushed and he fell to the ground when he was stopped by the policemen on Thursday, who thwarted his march to meet the victim’s family.
Ghulam Nabi Azad’s remarks came as he was preparing with several other Congress leaders to head to the UP village.
“Photo opportunity kaun karta hai yeh sabko malum hai (Everybody knows who indulges in photo opportunity,” the Rajya Sabha MP had told reporters, when asked about the criticism against the visit of the Congress leaders to UP.
Thursday’s dramatic visuals showing Rahul Gandhi on ground – surrounded by a large number of cops – had prompted attack by the opposition leaders.
“Reckless behavior of UP police towards Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is extremely condemnable. It is reprehensible for those who are supposed to uphold the law to trample upon democratic values in such a manner,” tweeted NCP leader Sharad Pawar.