Himachal Pradesh Congress chief Kuldeep Singh Rathore on Monday accused the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of trying to “distort“ the history of Atal Tunnel at Rohtang and charged that this seemed to be the case as the foundation stone laid by former UPA government was missing from the tunnel.
Talking to media in Shimla, Rathore said the then UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, former Union Steel Minister Virbhadra Singh and former Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal had laid the foundation stone of Atal Tunnel Rohtang on 28 June 2010.
“It is surprising that the foundation stone bearing the names of Congress and BJP leaders was missing and the onus for the entire fiasco lies with the state government and district administration,” he added.
State Congress chief said the act was entirely illegal and against democratic norms as the BJP was indulging in such tactics to serve its political motives. He further stated that he had directed the local Congress leaders in Kullu district to file a complaint in this regard with the police as it was a serious issue and amounted to tampering with historical facts.
“I have written a letter to Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur on the issue of missing foundation stone and a copy of the letter has also been sent to Director General of Police Sanjay Kundu, seeking action in the case.
We have requested the Chief Minister to complete the probe in the case within 15 days and restore the missing plaque, otherwise the party will resort to protests across the state against such unconstitutional and illegal actions,” he said. Rathore said he had also received such reports of removal of foundation stones laid by former Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh and other party leaders from Shimla, Solan, Lahaul Spiti districts and other constituencies of the state. He termed it as a disturbing trend in our vibrant democratic system and said such incidents should be avoided. He also lashed at Prime Minister Narendra Modi led NDA government on the issue of farm bills and said Congress party was with the farmers on these issues as these bills will badly affect the farming community.
“The farm bills will lead to hoarding of agricultural products and only big businessmen will benefit from these legislations while farmers will suffer as they will be forced to sell their crops as throwaway prices,” he added.