Congress defends Rahul’s visit to farmers’ village

May 11th, 2011 - 7:24 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party New Delhi, May 11 (IANS) The Congress Wednesday came down heavily on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for terming Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi’s visit to an Uttar Pradesh farmers’ village as “drama” and said “no one can question the motive” behind it. The village has been the scene of a violent agitation against land acquisition by the state government.

“He (Rahul Gandhi) is going there as an MP from Uttar Pradesh. He is going there as a leader of the ruling party of this country and people can’t question his motives and his right to do this,” Minister for Corporate and Minority Affairs Salman Khursheed told reporters here.

Khursheed was referring to BJP leader Rajnath Singh’s charges that the visit to the Bhatta Parsaul village in Uttar Pradesh’s Greater Noida was a “drama” and that his visit had created a “law and order” situation there.

“If he can’t do this, what else can he do? I think it’s completely irresponsible for anyone to say that he has no right to go there,” the minister added.

“When something of this nature happens it is for him to go and show sympathy for anybody who has suffered or to try and discover for himself and find out for himself what exactly is the controversy. I think it’s not fair to question his right to do that,” he added.

Rahul Gandhi reached the village early Tuesday morning and sat with the agitating farmers who are fighting for more compensation over their land acquisition by the Uttar Pradesh government.

Police and agitating farmers in Greater Noida, which falls in Gautam Budh Nagar district, fought pitched battles in Bhatta Parsaul village Saturday in which four people, including two policemen, were killed.

The clash erupted when police tried to rescue the state road transport corporation employees held hostage by the farmers.

The farmers are agitating for higher compensation for land taken for constructing the 156-km Yamuna Expressway that is to link New Delhi with Agra and reduce travel time by an hour.

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