Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Friday dismissed Haryana Minister Anil Vij’s threat to not allow Rahul Gandhi to enter the state as a futile move to stifle the voice of an angry nation, and warned that such dictatorial steps would only strengthen the resolve of the Congress to fight for the rights of the farmers.“Is there jungle raj in Haryana that you can stop anyone, least of all a duly elected leader of a national political party, from entering the state or from raising his voice against the injustice being meted out to farmers?” the Chief Minister asked the Haryana government, reacting strongly to Vij’s statement.Coming on the heels of the assault and cases registered by the UP police against Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, and seen in the context of the earlier lathi-charge by Haryana police against agitating farmers, it was clear that the BJP governments in these states were bent on suppressing the voice of the opposition in total violation of the democratic rights enshrined in the Constitution, said Captain Amarinder.
“The Congress will not be cowed down by such autocratic and undemocratic actions of the BJP-led governments, either at the Centre or in the states,” said the Chief Minister, adding that his party will now let the BJP suppress the voice of dissent, which is the right of every Indian.
“If they (the BJP) think they can break the will of the Congress leadership, or quell all opposition with such high-handedness, they are living in a fool’s paradise,” Captain Amarinder said. History stands testimony to the fact that the voice of the people only gets stronger if it is sought to be crushed by force, he warned.The Chief Minister flayed the obnoxious manner in which the BJP had been trying to brow-beat the Opposition and muffle its voice, first in Parliament over the Farm Bills and then yesterday in UP, where the Gandhis were forcibly stopped from meeting the distressed family of the victim of the shocking Hathras incident. Vij’s statement showed that these acts were not arbitrary but a part of a grand design by the BJP to destroy all Opposition, he said. “But the BJP will not succeed, the people of India will not let them get away with this, they will once again be reduced to the 2-odd seats in Parliament from where they had started their political journey,” Captain Amarinder warned.The Congress has always stood with the farmers and the downtrodden, and will continue to fight for their rights, he asserted.