In a dramatic turn of events, Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi were detained by the Uttar Pradesh police on Thursday near Yamuna Expressway. The duo was detained after they decided to march to Hathras to meet the gang-rape victim’s family after being stopped on the highway.
The Uttar Pradesh police cited the imposition of Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code that prohibits the assembly of four or more people to deny entry to the Gandhis.
Rahul Gandhi pushed to the ground by police
Meanwhile, Rahul Gandhi alleged that he was pushed to the ground and struck with a baton by the police.
Sources said that a scuffle broke out at the Delhi-Noida border on Thursday afternoon as Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi tried to make their way to reach Hathras. As police tried to stop the Congress leaders and the massive crowd from moving forward, Rahul Gandhi was pushed to the ground by the police personnel.
Pictures from the incident became viral on social media. In the pictures, Rahul Gandhi is seen being pushed by policemen. One of the pictures showed the Congress leader lying on the ground as party workers gather around to pick him up.
I condemn the assault by UP Police on our leader @RahulGandhi who is fighting to get justice for Hathras rape victim.
Under what law has he been detained? Why are he & @priyankagandhi not being allowed to meet victim's family?
Why is the PM not speaking about 'Beti Bachao' now? pic.twitter.com/s9lA5gWesZ
— DK Shivakumar (@DKShivakumar) October 1, 2020
Rahul Gandhi attacks UP CM on Twitter
Rahul Gandhi took to Twitter to criticise the Uttar Pradesh government’s action. He said: “People are not left alone at the time of crisis. This is the height of lawlessness in Uttar Pradesh that meeting members of the grief-stricken family also terrorises the government. Mr CM, don’t be that afraid.”
दुख की घड़ी में अपनों को अकेला नहीं छोड़ा जाता।
UP में जंगलराज का ये आलम है कि शोक में डूबे एक परिवार से मिलना भी सरकार को डरा देता है।
इतना मत डरो, मुख्यमंत्री महोदय!
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) October 1, 2020
The attack on Rahul Gandhi drew sharp criticism from the Opposition, with many demanding the resignation of UP CM Yogi Adityanath.
Hathras gang-rape case history
The 19-year-old woman was attacked on September 14 at Hathras village. She told the cops that she was dragged by her dupatta into the fields where she had been cutting grass.
The family later found her in the fields, naked and bleeding, with injuries on her neck and back.
She suffered multiple fractures, paralysis and a deep gash in her tongue in the assault. The injuries to her neck left her paralysed and struggling to breathe, media reports said.
Her family has alleged that the police did not help them initially and only reacted after public outrage over the incident.
UP police denied that her tongue was cut off and said she bit her tongue when her attackers were trying to strangle her.
News of her death led to protests outside the hospital with the Bhim Army of Chandrashekhar Azad blocking roads for 10-15 minutes and protesters chanting ‘hang the rapists’. There has been an outpouring of grief and anger from politicians, celebrities and others.
The UP police initially registered an attempt to murder case but added rape charges only after the woman’s formal statement. They have denied the family’s allegation of slow response.
The victim’s family alleged that the body was cremated by the police in a hurry in the dead of the night and the family and relatives were not allowed to have a last look.
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