Jalandhar: Congress leader Amarinder Singh questioned the "mysterious silence" of Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the alleged atrocities against Dalits and said a divide among its people does not augur well for an emerging world power.
Condemning the "series of excesses and atrocities" against Dalits, the Congress' Punjab unit chief said such incidents of class divide can have severe consequences. "We already have many external enemies ready to destabilise and weaken our country and let us not facilitate them and make their job easy by dividing our own people," he said, while addressing a demonstration at Kartarpur to protest against the Dalit atrocities.
"I was shocked and shaken after watching the video of three Dalit boys being beaten up after being tied up with a car. This is the worst crime and the criminals must be dealt with severe punishment. It was all the more shameful, since it happened in Modi's home state (Gujarat)," he said.
The PPCC president said that when the country should be concerned about its enemies along the borders, there are sections inside, who are trying to divide people. "Imagine what will happen if we place one community against the other in the name of caste and religion," he said.
"India is considered an emerging power in the world and incidents like these should make everyone feel concerned.
The former Punjab chief minister said there appeared to be a pattern in the violence against Dalits. "Gujarat was not an isolated incident. It was one in the series," he said, adding, "This is happening in UP, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh and everywhere and the government is watching as a mute spectator."
Amarinder also condemned Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal for his "silence" over what happened in Phagwara, where members of two two communities, armed with swords and other sharp weapons, clashed on Friday and hurled stones at each other.
He asked Badal to take strong action against trouble mongers.