The Rajasthan's unit of the Congress on Friday alleged that the central government's decision to withdraw the SPG cover given to party president Sonia Gandhi, her son Rahul and daughter Priyanka is "politically motivated" and part of a "big conspiracy". The government on Friday replaced the Special Protection Group (SPG) security cover given to the family of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, who was assassinated by LTTE terrorists on May 21, 1991, by the 'Z-plus' security of the CRPF.
Congress national general secretary Avinash Pandey told reporters here that the decision to withdraw the SPG cover is a "sensitive" matter for the country and the Opposition.
"Several leaders, including the Gandhi family, have sacrificed their lives. An environment is being spread in the country in the name of terrorism and other issues. In such a situation, withdrawal of security cover of Sonia Gandhi and other members of the Gandhi family is highly condemnable and is a part of big conspiracy," Pandey told reporters here.
For Rajasthan Deputy Chief Minister and Congress state president Sachin Pilot, the BJP-led government's action seems to be "politically motivated".
"Despite a clear threat to the Gandhi family, which has lost two family members and PMs to terror attacks. The decision of the Govt to reduce their security cover looks politically motivated. This is putting their lives at risk. Their SPG cover should be immediately reinstated," Pilot tweeted. Pandey, who is also Congress' state in charge, landed in Jaipur to participate in various events organised by the state unit.
He said that securing lives of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and other Opposition leaders is the responsibility of the Centre and if there is any negligence in it and if something "untoward" happens then the "people of the country will not pardon". Responding to a question that Maharashtra Congress MLAs are coming to Rajasthan on fear of being poached, Pandey said, "I have come here to participate organisational event. If MLAs have come here as a tourist, then I am unware. If they are coming, then are welcome. People from various parts come to Rajasthan due to its hospitality."
He claimed that every MLA, including Congress' and those from other parties are being threatened, lured and being called, which is highly condemnable.
"In the past six years, people have seen how democracy has been mocked and governments are being formed using horse-trading. There are various examples in front of everyone. Without any shame, governments were formed in Manipur, Goa, Tripura, Karnataka. The drama is being witnessed by the country," he said.
Pandey said that Congress understands its responsibility and if Maharashtra Congress MLAs want to come to Rajasthan as precautionary measure, they are welcome.