Punjab Govt Draws Criticism Over PM Security Breach

Holding the Charanjit Singh Channi government responsible for the security lapse during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Punjab, that eventually led to the cancellation of all his programmes on Wednesday, former Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has demanded dismissal of the government and imposition of President’s rule in the state.

In a statement issued here today, the former Chief Minister said, “This government has lost all the moral and constitutional authority to continue in office as it failed in its constitutional duty to provide security to our Prime Minister”.
He said, by trying to deflect the issue and claim that it was a spontaneous protest by some people that blocked the Prime Minister’s route, the government was trying to defend the indefensible and run away from responsibility.

“If the Prime Minister of the country has to cancel all his programmes owing to a grave security breach, what should be the plight of the ordinary person living in Punjab?” the former Chief Minister asked, while asserting that sooner this government was dismissed better it would be for the state and its people.

Captain Amarinder Singh said, it was a deliberate mischief of the government to disrupt the Prime Minister’s programmes in Punjab, as he was to start various development projects to the tune of more than Rs 50,000 crores, which would benefit the people of the state.

The former Chief Minister regretted that this government had stooped so low that it orchestrated disruption of the rally and did not provide proper security to the Prime Minister and he had to cancel his programmes. “Just because he belongs to the opposition party does not mean that you disrupt his programmes. After all he is the Prime Minister of the entire country”, Capt Amarinder told the Chief Minister, while adding, “what happened today was shameful and disgraceful and the government and the Chief Minister cannot escape the responsibility for it”.

PM Modi was scheduled to visit Ferozepur on Wednesday to lay the foundation stone of multiple development projects worth more than Rs 42,750 crore.

The Home Ministry has taken cognisance of the “serious security lapse” and has sought a detailed report from the Punjab government. The state government has also been asked to fix responsibility for this lapse and take strict action.

The Home Ministry said in a statement that PM Modi landed at Bathinda on Wednesday morning from where he was to go to the National Martyrs Memorial at Hussainiwala by helicopter.

Due to rain and poor visibility, the Prime Minister waited for about 20 minutes for the weather to clear out.

The statement said that when the weather did not improve, it was decided that he would visit the National Marytrs Memorial via road, which would take more than two hours. The Prime Minister proceeded to travel by road after necessary confirmation of necessary security arrangements by the DGP Punjab Police.

Around 30 kms away from the National Martyrs Memorial in Hussainiwala, when the Prime Minister’s convoy reached a flyover, it was found that the road was blocked by some protestors.

The Prime Minister was stuck on a flyover for 15-20 minutes.

“This was a major lapse in the security of the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister’s schedule and travel plan was communicated well in advance to the Punjab Government. As per procedure, they have to make necessary arrangements for logistics, security as well as keep a contingency plan ready,” the statement said

“Also in view of the contingency plan the Punjab Government has to deploy additional security to secure any movement by road , which were clearly not deployed. After this security lapse, it was decided to head back to Bathinda Airport,” it added.

Government sources said what was witnessed on the flyover was “a surprising scene of connivance between Punjab police and so-called protestors”.

They said only Punjab police knew the precise route of the PM and “never has such police behaviour been witnessed”. (ANI)

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