Rahul Gandhi to go ahead with Amethi visit from October 4
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi is likely to go ahead with his proposed visit to Amethi from October 4 to 6, despite the district administration’s request urging the local Congress unit to defer the programme.
“Yes, Rahul Gandhi will visit Amethi as per schedule. There is no change in his programme,” said Gandhi’s Lok Sabha representative, Chandrakant Dubey.
In a letter to the president of the district Congress committee (Amethi) dated September 30, Amethi district magistrate Yogesh Kumar had urged the party to defer Gandhi’s visit to after October 5, citing that making security arrangements on these dates will cause inconvenience.
In his letter, Kumar quoted Special Protection Group (SPG) director’s communique informing the district administration about Gandhi’s programme.
He said, “I have to inform you that Durga Puja, Dussehra and Muharram programmes will continue at a number of places in the district till October 5.
“The district’s police force will remain busy with duties related to maintaining law and order on these dates. For this reason, making security arrangements during Rahul Gandhi’s programme will cause inconvenience. I request you to get his programme fixed after October 5.”
Kumar said he had sent a letter to the Congress keeping in view ‘bonafide’ concerns for Gandhi’s security.
“Traditionally, immersion of idols takes place five days after Durga Puja. In all, 898 idols have to be immersed and the procession will pass through areas near mosques in Musafir Khana and Tiloi areas.
“Our sub-divisional magistrates and circle officers will remain deployed at these mosques. So, we requested the Congress to defer Gandhi’s visit from October 4 to October 6. We will make appropriate security arrangements so that Gandhi’s visit goes as scheduled,” he said.
The Congress, however, took strong exception to the Amethi DM’s letter, saying the state and Union governments were afraid of Gandhi’s visit to his constituency and hence wanted his programme deferred.
“Besides being Lok Sabha seats, Amethi and Rae Bareli are like family for Gandhi. The district administration wants to stop him from visiting his family. Chief minister Yogi Adityanath and Prime Minister NarendraModi are afraid of him,” said senior Congress leader Akhilesh Pratap Singh.
District Congress Committee (Amethi) president Yogendra Mishra said BJP president Amit Shah along with some Union ministers is likely to visit Amethi on October 10. “The district administration wants that Gandhi’s visit to his Lok Sabha constituency should not precede Shah and the Union ministers’ programme,” added Mishra.
Rubbishing the allegations, senior BJP leader Uma Shankar Pandey said the district administration wanted the visit deferred for security reasons and there was nothing more to it.