Two days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi had got jammed on a flyover in Punjab for 20 minutes in what has been called a massive security lapse, a new video that has surfaced on social media on Friday has spurred a fresh tension for the party as the people with a BJP flag had come too close to the Prime Minister's cavalcade that took on an unanticipated change in Modi's itinerary than the protesters who were alleged to have blocked the road, disrupting the Prime Minister's passage.
The video that was shared by the Congress party had shown a group of people carrying a BJP flag is seen shouting slogans of 'BJP Zindabad' and was seen standing very close to the Prime Minister's car. On Wednesday, Narendra Modi landed at Bathinda Airport in Punjab to participate in various events. He was scheduled to reach Ferozepur through a chopper, but due to the poor weather conditions, his travel plan had a last-minute change as he had decided to travel by road.
His road journey was estimated to take two hours and when he was driving on a flyover in Hussainiwala, his motorcade equipped with the guards of the Special Protection Group (SPG) was stopped after it was found that the road was blocked by some protesters. The incident had drawn national attention and it was termed as a major lapse in the Prime Minister's security. Modi was stuck on a flyover for 15-20 minutes and following the blockade, he returned to Bathinda airport by cancelling the tour and had flown back to Delhi.
In a statement, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs has said that it has taken cognisance of this serious security lapse and a detailed report has been sought from the state government. The Union Ministers and BJP leaders had blamed the Congress ruling Punjab government for the security lapse and Delhi had held Congress responsible for the breach, despite the latter denying any security lapse or political motive behind the incident.
Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi has on Thursday said there was no threat to Modi's life and added that the Prime Minister had cancelled the campaign programme on Wednesday because of less number of people at the rally. Following the security lapse, Modi had met with the President of India and briefed him about the incident and the Home Ministry has formed a 3-member panel to enquire into the security lapse.
The panel is headed by Sudhir Kumar Saxena, Secretary (Security) Cabinet Secretariat and consists of Balbir Singh, Joint Director of the Intelligence Bureau, and S Suresh, Inspector General of the Special Protection Group. The Home Ministry's panel has on Friday visited the site where PM Modi's cavalcade was stuck on a flyover and the Supreme Court has directed the registrar general of Punjab and Haryana High Court to secure and preserve all records in connection with PM Modi's visit to Punjab.
Amid such developments, the Congress party has shared a video on its official Twitter handle on Friday which had shown a group of people with BJP flag standing close to Modi's car. Sharing the video, Congress has asked why were the BJP workers had allowed to come close to the Prime Minister's car during his Punjab visit and if they were allowed to, why is the Punjab government being blamed on the issue of security breach during his visit.
The Congress has accused PM Modi and the BJP of defaming Punjab and its culture. Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge had shared the video on social media and asked, "Modi Ji, isn't this proof that you tried to defame the people of Punjab and Congress CM Charanjit Singh Channi's Govt? The only threat to PM and the nation's security are BJP workers?". The reports say that the BJP workers getting close to Modi's car will also account for a security breach and the Congress party has further asked why the guards of the SPG didn't stop these workers.
Congress party has said, "It is beyond everyone's comprehension that some members of the BJP were standing very close to PM Modi's convoy and were raising slogans in support of Modi Ji. The SPG didn't stop them...Why?". It further asked, "Was it a lapse in security or BJP's conspiracy?". On the other hand, farmers, who were protesting on the road due to which Modi's cavalcade was stopped, had argued that the BJP workers got too close to the Prime Minister that they did. As both the national parties are trading charges, tensions have been escalating between them ahead of the Punjab assembly polls.
Modi ji, isn't this proof that you tried to defame the people of Punjab and Congress CM @CHARANJITCHANNI's Govt?— Mallikarjun Kharge (@kharge) January 7, 2022
The only threat to PM and the nation’s security are BJP workers ? pic.twitter.com/gAilQVEbEM