Opposition MPs Stage Protest Near Gandhi Statue in Parliament Complex, Demand PM’s Statement on Manipur

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"It is shameful that PM Modi has spoken outside when we are demanding that he makes a statement on the real situation in Manipur in both the Houses," Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge told the media.

NEW DELHI — The Opposition MPs on Monday staged a protest near  Mahatma Gandhi statue in Parliament demanding Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statement in both the Houses on Manipur violence.

Carrying placards that read “India demands PM statement in both the Houses over Manipur”,  the leaders, under Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) led by Congress, also raised slogans against the BJP government over the violence in the northeastern state.

“It is shameful that PM Modi has spoken outside when we are demanding that he makes a statement on the real situation in Manipur in both the Houses,” Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge told the media.

The Prime Minister is making a statement outside the House even when Parliament is in session. It is his duty to make a comprehensive statement inside the Parliament on Manipur violence, he added.

“Today Defence Minister Rajnath Singh called me and several other Opposition MPs, and we told him that if the Prime Minister makes a statement in the House only then we will participate in the discussion. And this Section 267 is important as under this the discussion should be held for a couple of days and we can vote in the House,” Kharge said.

Though the BJP leaders will want a short discussion on the issue, the problem cannot be solved with that, he pointed out. “We want to ask why is he (Modi) not addressing the 140 crore people by coming into the House and telling the truth?” Kharge wondered.

The Congress-led Opposition parties have been demanding the statement from the Prime Minister in both Houses of Parliament over the issue.

On Thursday — the first day of the Parliament’s Monsoon Session –, Prime Minister Modi expressed his pain and anger over the Manipur incident and termed the incident with the women in the Northeastern state “very shameful”, and can never be forgiven.

“This incident is an insult for the entire nation as it has shamed 140 crore countrymen. The incident which happened with the women in Manipur can never be forgiven. I assure the countrymen that no one will be spared,” he had added.

However, he went on to club incidents of violence in Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh (both Congress-ruled states) also in his statement.

“The incident might be from Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh or Manipur, the culprit should not go scot-free in any corner of the country,” the Prime Minister had said.

Ethnic clashes erupted in Manipur on May 3 and since then hundreds of people have lost their lives whereas thousands have been forced to take refuge in the relief camps.

A video of two women being stripped and paraded by a mob in Manipur on May 4, went viral on July 19 leading to widespread condemnation across the country. — IANS

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