Congress claims Bharat Bandh a 'success', accuses BJP-led govt of lying to public over cause of crude price hike

Thanking civilians and other Opposition parties for participating in the nation-wide protest, Congress general secretary Ashok Gehlot on Monday said that the Bharat Bandh called by the party was a success.

"Today’s Bharat Bandh has been successful across the country. The Congress party has never held a Bharat Bandh before, we don’t even believe in Bharat Bandh, but since the time Modi government has come to power, there have been many situations that have led us to this," Gehlot said at a press conference in New Delhi.

Underscoring Congress chief Rahul Gandhi's statements questioning the BJP's silence over the country-wide protest, Gehlot said that the Bandh's success highlights how the BJP-led government has not fulfilled its promises to the people of India.

"The country was misled by lies that fuel prices will go down — but nothing happened. Only politics was discussed at the National Executive Meet," he said.

Gehlot agreed with statements made by former prime minister Manmohan Singh at a rally in Delhi, which asked for a united Opposition to take down the BJP.

"We should all come together to save democracy because it is in danger," Singh said.

Gehlot was accompanied by Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala, who said, "The Bharat Bandh received support from every corner of the nation and turned into a people's movement."

Surjewala also condemned the BJP government for deceiving the public. "The BJP claimed that the reason behind rising fuel costs is the diminishing economy and the increasing cost of crude oil across the globe. Both of these reasons are completely untrue," he said.

The Congress leaders' comments come after Opposition groups across India came together to protest rising fuel prices.

The shutdown, called by the Congress and other left-wing parties, saw representatives from Janata Dal-Secular, Trinamool Congress, Rashtriya Janata Dal, Nationalist Congress Party, Loktantrik Janata Dal (LJD), Rashtriya Lok Dal, All India United Democratic Front, Revolutionary Socialist Party and Aam Aadmi Party joining the protest march in Delhi.

Follow LIVE updates on the Bharat Bandh here.

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Updated Date: Sep 10, 2018 17:53:30 IST