‘Vendetta, intimidation and harassment’, says Congress after police arrive at Rahul Gandhi’s home
The police wanted to question the Wayanad MP on the ‘sexual harassment victims’ that he had mentioned in this speech during the Bharat Jodo Yatra.
Delhi Police on Sunday arrived at the home of Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi for questioning him, evoking a strong reaction from the Congress, reported The Indian Express.
On Thursday, the Delhi Police had served a notice to Gandhi to seek information on the “sexual harassment victims” that he had mentioned in this speech during the Bharat Jodo Yatra.
In Srinagar during the march, Gandhi had talked about how women are still sexually assaulted in the country.
“When I was walking, there were a lot of women who were crying... Few of them got emotional after seeing me,” he had said. “But there were women who told me they have been raped, they have been molested. Few said they were molested by their relatives/known persons.”
He had added: “When I asked them if I should call the police, they told me no and said they wanted me to know. They didn’t want to inform the police because they said they would face more issues. So, this is the truth of our country.”
The police team led by Special Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) Sagar Preet Hooda stood outside Gandhi’s home for over an hour before the Wayanad MP met them, reported NDTV. The police team then left, and Gandhi was seen leaving his house in his car soon after.
Meanwhile, at a press conference, party leaders Ashok Gehlot, Jairam Ramesh and Abhishek Singhvi said the move was a clear case of “vendetta, intimidation and harassment” in order to create an atmosphere against the former Congress chief, reported PTI.
Gehlot asserted that the Union government was setting a bad example by registering cases on statements of Opposition leaders made during political campaigns, adding that Bharatiya Janata Party leaders could face similar action over remarks made in states not ruled by it.
“The way they are behaving is not possible without a signal from the top,” Gehlot alleged. “Without the orders of Amit Shah and the Ministry of Home Affairs, the police would not dare do this. They have entered the residence of a national leader without any reason. And the police have done this despite the fact that he has already said that a response to its notice will be given.”
Terming it a serious matter, Hooda said after Gandhi made his remark, the polcie conducted a local inquiry to collect details if any woman had approached him during the Yatra’s Delhi leg about her problems, reported PTI.
“But no such incident came to the notice of our officials also nor did we find any victim,” the officer said.
Hooda said that after the police failed to collect any information in this regard, they decided to approach the Congress leader himself and so a notice with a questionnaire was sent to him seeking details of victims who had approached him about sexual harassment.
“We tried to contact him [Gandhi] but he was abroad then,” he added. “So, today, I, along with my team, went to his residence and communicated to his staff about the same.”
The BJP, however, said that Gandhi should give the police the information so that the victims could get justice.
Party spokesperson Sambit Patra said the Congres is now crying that “democracy is in danger” over the lawful action by the police.
“Assuming he [Gandhi] didn’t lie then, it shows his feeble commitment towards ensuring justice,” BJP leader Amit Malviya tweeted.