Congress hits out at Centre over removal of SPG cover Sonia Gandhi, Rahul, Priyanka

Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh on Friday demanded an immediate revocation of the Central government’s ‘politically motivated’ decision.

Written by November 8, 2019 19:17

New Delhi: The Congress party on Friday launched a scathing attack on the BJP led Central government for withdrawing the Special Protection Group (SPG) cover to its president Sonia Gandhi and party leaders — Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.

Speaking at a press conference here, Congress General Secretary KC Venugopal said: “Two former Prime Ministers of the country — Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi were murdered. It was former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who amended the law to give the family of Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi SPG cover.”

Gandhi family

Venugopal said: “Former Prime Minister VP Singh made the same mistake for Rajiv Gandhi and the country paid a price for it in the assassination of Rajivji.”

He alleged that blinded by personal revenge and political vendetta, the current dispensation was doing the same thing.

“On what circumstances the Home Ministry decided to do this. Usually, the SPG security is under the Cabinet Secretary and not with the Home Ministry but here the Home Ministry has issued the withdrawal notice. On what basis they have withdrawn the SPG cover. They are playing with the life of Sonia, Rahul, and Priyanka,” said Venugopal.

Withdrawing SPG cover politically motivated, says Captain

Condemning the withdrawal of Special Protection Group (SPG) security cover from Sonia Gandhi and her children — Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Friday demanded an immediate revocation of the Central government’s ‘politically motivated’ decision.

He also urged the Central government to reconsider its decision, particularly in view of the security scenario currently prevailing in the country, with the terror threat from across the border growing every day.

“Considering that Sonia Gandhi’s husband Rajiv Gandhi and mother-in-law Indira Gandhi were assassinated, the grant of SPG cover to the Gandhi family was not a political favour but a necessity,” Amarinder said.

He added, “By withdrawing the SPG cover of the Congress president, as well as MP Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, the Central government has shown extreme pettiness and a total disregard for the safety of a family that has made huge sacrifices for the country.”

Manmohan - SPG security

Recalling the SPG withdrawal of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh a few months ago, the Chief Minister said that neither decision was based on ground reality.

While citing reports indicating that the security review that led to the latest decision had found that the Gandhi family ‘did not cooperate and impeded the smooth functioning of SPG by not using the SPG protection on several occasions,’ he questioned: “Does that justify the withdrawal of the SPG cover from the family?”

Sonia, Rahul, Priyanka Gandhi

“If the Centre did feel so strongly about this, it should have taken up the matter with the Gandhis. Not using the SPG protection cannot be interpreted to mean that the security threat that had necessitated the cover in the first place had disappeared,” the Chief Minister added.

“In Punjab, he had ensured the continuation of the same security cover to former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and his son and former Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal that they enjoyed while in office in view of the threat they continue to face,” said Singh. (ANI)