Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who is on a campaign trail in poll-bound Chhattisgarh on Sunday, targeted his counterpart Bhupesh Baghel for reportedly “speaking against” the central paramilitary force CRPF.
Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel reportedly expressed suspicion about money being transported in through special planes in the state ahead of elections. He accused the BJP, and CRPF personnel and reportedly requested the Election Commission to investigate all the special planes landing in Chhattisgarh.
Against that backdrop, CM Sarma criticised Baghel for targeting the CRPF instead of taking revenge from the Naxals for having killed Congress leaders in previous years.
“When Congress leaders killed during BJP’s time…Bhupesh Baghel should have taken revenge from Naxalites (for those killings). When his own leaders were killed, he is targeting CRPF, instead of Naxalites. What are those CRPF personnel? The sons of the poor are in CRPF. The sons of people from the poorest section are in CRPF. Why is he speaking against the CRPF…,” Sarma asked.
Notably, in 2013, the state’s entire Congress leadership was wiped out in the Naxal attack that took place in Bastar’s Jheeram Ghati killing as many as 29 people, including the then state Congress chief Nand Kumar Patel, his son Dinesh, senior party leader Mahendra Karma and former Union minister V C Shukla. The Congress leaders were returning from the party’s ‘Parivartan Rally’ when their convoy was ambushed by around 250 Naxals. Several security personnel were among those killed.
The 90-member Chhattisgarh assembly will go for assembly elections in two phases — November 7 and November 17 — and the counting of votes, along with those of four other poll-bound states, has been scheduled for December 3. The other four states that are going to the polls are Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, and Mizoram.
Congress stormed to the hustings in Chhattisgarh in the 2018 elections, winning 68 of the 90 seats and hogging 43.9 per cent of the total votes polled.
The BJP had to be content with just 15 seats. (ANI)