India police detain opposition leaders protesting price rise | Protests News

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi tweeted after police cracked down on protests over rising inflation.

Indian police arrested dozens of MPs from the opposition Congress party, including key leader Rahul Gandhi, as they tried to march to the presidential and prime ministerial residences to protest against food and fuel prices. rising data and an increase in the goods and services tax (GST).

Police on Friday also arrested hundreds of party supporters in the capital New Delhi to prevent them from joining protest leaders, many of whom were dressed in black.

Some of the women protesting cooked food outside the party headquarters with wood for fires, saying the price of cooking gas had risen beyond the means of poor and middle-class families.

Protest against India
Indian paramilitary soldiers arrest a congressman in New Delhi [Altaf Qadri/AP]

In New Delhi, police began cordoning off the party headquarters and homes of leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday after the party announced plans to hold nationwide protests against the government. Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“What we are witnessing is the death of democracy in India,” Rahul Gandhi told reporters. “Anyone who resists the idea of ​​the beginning of this dictatorship is brutally attacked, jailed, arrested and beaten. The idea is that people’s problems – whether it’s rising prices, unemployment or violence in society – people’s problems aren’t raised. That is the only agenda of the government.”

“Democracy is a celebration,” Gandhi later tweeted with photos of the police crackdown on the protests.

Police thwarted the party’s attempt to organize similar rallies in Mumbai, India’s financial capital, Guwahati, and several other cities, arresting party members and taking them away by car. buses and other vehicles.

There was no immediate comment from police. The lawmakers and their supporters are expected to be released after a short remand period – a common practice for the police during such protests.

“This is the worst form of politics. We will not surrender! We will not be silent! We will continue to speak out against the injustices and failures of the Modi government,” the party said in a tweet.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman defended the government’s handling of the economy in parliament earlier this week and said it was unlikely that India would slip into a recession.

The opposition was angered by the government’s decision last month to impose tariffs on packaged curds, cheese, buttermilk, packaged rice, flour and wheat. The government also raised fuel and gas prices.

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