New Delhi: Many Congress workers and several senior leaders were detained by the Delhi Police Monday as they marched with Rahul Gandhi from the party headquarters to the office of the Enforcement Directorate (ED). Gandhi left the office after being questioned for nearly three hours.
Gandhi had been summoned by the ED to be questioned in the National Herald money laundering case, and was accompanied by a host of top leaders in a planned ‘satyagraha’ — with similar protest marches being held across the country.
Those detained by the police include the party’s general secretaries Randeep Singh Surjewala and K.C. Venugopal, Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, former Union minister Jairam Ramesh, former Uttarakhand CM Harish Rawat, Bengal PCC chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Youth Congress president Srinivas B.V., and spokesperson Pawan Khera.
Speaking to the press, Surjewala said, “The coward Modi government has arrested hundreds of Congress workers. The British used to hide behind the police and now the Modi government is hiding behind the police”.
The Delhi Police — who cited law and order issues Sunday to deny permission to the March — had blocked all entry points to the All India Congress Committee (AICC) and ED headquarters since 8 am Monday.
Other senior leaders who accompanied Rahul Gandhi on the march include his sister Priyanka Gandhi, Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel, former Union Ministers P. Chidambaram and Sachin Pilot, former party general secretary Digvijaya Singh, former Kerala CM Oommen Chandy, Ambika Soni, and many others.
The leaders, MPs and members of the Congress Working Committee had gathered at the party headquarters, from where they began the march. While several party workers were picked up as they tried to make their way to the ED office, many senior leaders were picked up after the march as they tried to demonstrate in front of the office.
Priyanka Gandhi later went to meet some of the detained leaders at the Tughlaq Road police station. According to the party, MP and general secretary K.C. Venugopal fell sick and was hurt during the clashes with police.
(Edited by Rohan Manoj)
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