Congress seeks apology from Prasad over remarks on SC/ST act
New Delhi: Congress on Tuesday termed as 'factually incorrect' Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad's remarks that the Central government was not a party in the apex court in the case pertaining to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and sought an apology from him.
"The Law Minister has made a factually incorrect statement. He should withdraw the statement and apologise for making a wrong statement," Congress leader Anand Sharma told reporters here.
"They (the government) were very much a party. The government was represented, it did not argue the case. The government opened the window for anticipatory bail. The government endorsed by default by not telling the court that it cannot dilute the law, it cannot reinterpret the law, it cannot change the law. So, the government is a willing party to what has happened," he said.
The Congress has said that the law has been diluted following the apex court ruling.
Sharma accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of being silent on Prasad's "misleading" remarks.
"He will go next year with a dubious distinction of India having a Prime Minister who never participated in a parliamentary debate, never answered a parliamentary question," he said.
Congress Communications department incharge Randeep Singh Surjewala alleged that "a conspiracy" against the Act was made by the law ministry on indications from the prime minister, the BJP and the RSS.
He also accused the government of delay in filing a review petition in the apex court.
"What was the Modi government doing for 13 days," he asked, adding "it shows the ill-will of the government and its wrong intentions".
Congress leaders also countered BJP President Amit Shah's allegations earlier in the day that the party had ignored B.R. Ambedkar.
"What Amit Shah has said, I am not surprised, because he is ignorant of history. They are ideological descendants of those who collaborated with the British and opposed India's freedom struggle," Sharma said.
He said Ambedkar had lauded the role of Congress while presenting the final report during adoption of Constitution in November 1949, while also adding that a Congress member was asked to resign to make way for Ambedkar to join the Constituent Assembly.