'To Mobilise People?' Rahul Gandhi Left Miffed as Officials Reason Out Oppn's No-Entry in Srinagar
Gandhi posted a video of Saturday's events, showing authorities reading out an order to the opposition leaders that said that they were in Srinagar to 'mobilise people'.
Rahul Gandhi at Srinagar airport on Saturday
New Delhi: Dubbing the government's move to stop opposition leaders from entering Srinagar as "surprising", Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday said that the delegation and he press got a taste of the "draconian administration" and "brute force" unleashed on the people of Jammu and Kashmir when they tried to visit the Valley.
A delegation of opposition leaders, including Gandhi, which wanted to visit Kashmir Valley to take stock of the situation there after the abrogation of the provisions of Article 370, was not allowed to leave Srinagar airport on Saturday by the state administration and had to return to the national capital.
Gandhi posted a video of Saturday's events, showing authorities reading out an order to the opposition leaders that said that they were in Srinagar to "mobilise people". The former Congress president can be seen objecting to it, but was soon gestured to remain silent by other leaders.
"The thing is that the government has invited me. The governor has said that I am invited. But when I have come, you are saying that I am not supposed to enter. And the government is saying that everything is okay here; every thing is normal. So if every thing is okay and normal, then why aren't we allowed here? Surprising! We want to go to any area which is peaceful, and if it's (section) 144 then I am ready to go alone; we'll go individually," Gandhi tries to reason out with officers but to his vain.
The video further shows Gandhi speaking to the media and alleging that media persons accompanying the delegation were mishandled and beaten up. He also said it is clear that things are "not normal" in Jammu and Kashmir.
"It's been 20 days since the people of Jammu & Kashmir had their freedom and civil liberties curtailed," Gandhi said in a tweet. "Leaders of the Opposition and the Press got a taste of the draconian administration and brute force unleashed on the people of J&K when we tried to visit Srinagar yesterday," he said.
During Saturday's attempt to visit the Valley, Gandhi was accompanied by leaders of CPI(M), CPI, DMK, NCP, JD(S), RJD, LJD and TMC. The leaders included Congress's Ghulam Nabi Azad, Anand Sharma and KC Venugopal, CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury , Tiruchi Siva (DMK), Sharad Yadav (LJD), Dinesh Trivedi (TMC), D Raja (CPI), Majeed Menon (NCP), Manoj Jha (RJD) and D Kupendra Reddy JD(S).
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