'Intelligence failure to blame for Red Fort violence'

Intelligence failure to blame for Red Fort violence: Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury

The Centre did not do much to avert violence, said the Lok Sabha Leader of Opposition

Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury. Credit: PTI Photo

Leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha Adhir Chowdhury claimed on Thursday that intelligence failure on the part of the Delhi Police was to blame for the chaos and violence at Red Fort on January 26.

He also cast doubt on the Centre's intention, stating that the Union government probably did not do much to avert violence as it "might have wanted to take advantage of the situation".

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Thousands of farmers, protesting against the new agricultural laws, had clashed with the police on January 26. Many of them, driving tractors, reached the Red Fort and scaled the walls of the monument.

Some even hoisted flags on the domes and placed the flagstaff at the ramparts of the monument, where the national flag is unfurled by the prime minister on Independence Day.

Speaking to reporters, Chowdhury said that the Delhi Police had given designated routes to the farmers to take out the tractor parade.

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"But the farmers took different routes and a section of them breached the Red Fort. Surely, it was due to intelligence failure on the part of Delhi Police and other agencies," he said at the state Congress headquarters.

Accusing the BJP of branding any and every issue raised against the saffron party as "anti-national, Pakistani or Khalistani", Chowdhury, who is also the West Bengal Congress president, further said, "At times I feel that the central government deliberately allowed this (January 26 incident) to happen to take advantage of the situation."