The Delhi Police reportedly questioned Srinivas for 20 minutes over where IYC was getting oxygen cylinders, medicines, ambulances and food for COVID-19 affected people.

Crinivas BV talking on phone Srinivas BV/PTI photo
Coronavirus Controversy Friday, May 14, 2021 - 18:38

Few officers of Delhi Police on Friday arrived at the office of Indian Youth Congress (IYC) to enquire how it has been managing to provide medicines, oxygen cylinders and several other things required by COVID-19 patients. According to IYC members, officers of the Delhi Police Crime Branch team arrived at the IYC office on Raisina Road in Central Delhi around 11 am. They reportedly questioned IYC President Srinivas BV for about 20 minutes. A few weeks ago, the IYC had started a #SOSIYC campaign to help the people affected with COVID-19. The IY also set up a war room at its office to deal with the requests it gets through social media to deal with urgent need for oxygen cylinders, medicines, food to the families and homeless and ambulance services to ferry patients.  

Speaking to IANS, President Srinivas BV said, "They had come to enquire about how we are helping the people in distress on the basis of a petition filed in the court." He said that details were shared with the police. As per reports, he also said that he had nothing to hide, and would continue relief work. According to IYC activists, the police asked them from where they were bringing oxygen cylinders, several medicines, managing ambulance services and food for the people battling COVID-19 pandemic.

Earlier, police also asked AAP leader Dilip Pandey how he was managing to help COVID-19 affected families with medicines and oxygen cylinders. Congress national media in-charge Randeep Singh Surjewala slammed the government for targeting the IYC members who have been providing help to the people amid a brutal COVID-19 wave.

According to Congress, its Delhi unit president Anil Kumar and former MLA Mukesh Sharma have also received similar notices for questioning. The party protested against this questioning by the police and called it “harassment.” Congress in-charge of Delhi affairs, Shaktisinh Gokhale, addressed the media, and said that these are actions to intimidate party workers who are doing relief work. “The government thinks that because of our work, their inefficiency is getting exposed,” he said.

Earlier, responding to being questioned about where he had been getting oxygen cylinders and giving them to people, four-time Congress MLA Mukesh Sharma had tweeted that he did not fear anyone and was ready to go to jail for helping people in the time of need. “If helping people is a crime, then I am ready to be hung too,” he had said.

Hours after Delhi Police Crime Branch officers visited the office of the Indian Youth Congress, former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi on Friday slammed the government saying the rescuer is always greater than the one who kills. In a tweet in Hindi, Rahul Gandhi said, "The rescuer is always greater than the one who kills." He used the hashtag, ‘I stand with IYC’.

Congress spokesperson Rajdeep Surjewala also made a statement, condemning the questioning of party workers. “"The attempt to stop youth Congress volunteers and its national president Srinivas BV from helping people by sending Delhi Police, has exposed the Modi government's cruel side. We will not be intimidated by such actions against us and remain firm in our resolve to serve at this time of crisis.”

(With IANS inputs)