Opposition to boycott Constitution Day event

Opposition to boycott Constitution Day event at Parliament's Central Hall

Congress took the decision to skip the function at a meeting chaired by Sonia and attended by leaders like Leader of Opposition in RS Mallikarjun Kharge

Representative image. Credit: PTI file photo

Opposition parties from Congress to Trinamool to the Left will boycott Friday’s Constitution Day event at Parliament’s Central Hall where President Ram Nath Kovind will address, in protest against Narendra Modi government’s “trampling upon” the Constitution.

Besides Congress, other parties that will not send MPs for the programme are Trinamool Congress, RJD, DMK, CPI(M), CPI, RSP, Kerala Congress and Muslim League among others.

This is the second time that the Opposition is boycotting the November 26 function. In 2019, the Opposition boycotted the Central Hall function and assembled near Ambedkar Statue in Parliament House complex where leaders, including Congress president Sonia Gandhi, read the Preamble of the Constitution in protest against the swearing in of Devendra Fadnavis as Maharashtra Chief Minister in an early morning coup.

Congress took the decision to skip the function at a meeting chaired by Sonia and attended by leaders like Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge.

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From Congress, sources said, senior leaders Kharge, Anand Sharma, Jairam Ramesh and Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury spoke with leaders of other parties to coordinate the boycott.

Sources said the party felt that Opposition leaders were not given the respect it deserved. The leaders also felt that it was “ironic” that the BJP government was organising a function to celebrate the Constitution on a “single day” while it was disrespecting it every other day.

Leaders from two other Opposition parties said the MPs were informed about the function very late and just through bulletins and several were not aware of it.

“Actually, the government should have organised Constitution Protection Day instead of Constitution Day celebrations,” senior RJD MP Manoj K Jha told DH.

According to a government statement, the President would lead the celebrations of Constitution Day as part of the ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ programme.

Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla would speak at the function.

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