Alawalpur/Aligarh, July 6: Continuing his footmarch in Uttar Pradesh for the second day today, Rahul Gandhi lashed out at Chief Minister Mayawati over “forcible” acquisition of land from farmers and said the state government must understand its responsibilities.
The 41-year-old AICC General Secretary was headed towards Aligarh where the district administration said his ‘kisan padyatra' would be a “clear violation” of prohibitory orders in force if it enters the area. A Congress-backed kisan mahapanchayat is planned in Aligarh on Saturday.
Keeping the BSP supremo firmly on his cross-hairs, Rahul during his series of interactions with villagers while trudging the dusty tracks of Western UP said it was painful to know that farmers, whose land is being acquired, come to know of it only when the process is already over.
Extolling the farmers and people to share their stories with him, the scion of the Nehru-Gandhi family said he has come to hear them.
Resuming his march after a night halt at a farmer's house at Rampur Bangar, Rahul said the magnitude in which land was being acquired in UP was not happening anywhere else.
“It's ok if the land is being acquired for road. Roads should be constructed and development must take place, but here land is being taken for colony,” he said in Alawalpur.
The ruling BSP on its part attacked Rahul terming his padyatra as merely a “stunt and a political drama” in view of the coming assembly elections.
“The love for farmers is nothing but a stunt and political drama being enacted by Congress yuvraj before the coming assembly elections “, a BSP statement said.
In Aligarh, SSP Satyendra Vir Singh said, “Section 144 CrPC is in force all over the district since June 12 and in this background Rahul Gandhi's padyatra will be a clear violation(of prohibitory orders).”
The SSP, however, clarified that if there is no apprehension of law and order problem, the authorities might choose not to prevent Rahul's entry into the district.
Heavy police force was also deployed near Siarol village on Aligarh-Gautam Budh Nagar border. Rahul is barely at a short distance from the border, official sources said in Aligarh. PTI