New Delhi: Taking on the government on the eve of the 71st Republic Day, Congress interim chief Sonia Gandhi said, here on Saturday, the constitutional values were no longer safe.
"Today, the Constitution and its values are being attacked by way of a concerted and vicious conspiracy. Constitutional principles are being systematically encroached upon as also the independence of constitutional institutions is being scuttled at the whims of autocratic authoritarianism," Gandhi said in the statement.
Urging citizens to protect the Constitution, she said, "It's the duty of every citizen to stand united in defence of the Constitution." Gandhi said agriculture and farmers were on the verge of devastation, the youth were ravaged by unfathomable unemployment and the country was facing recession and closure of factories.
"It has led to unmitigated helplessness on part of small businesses and shopkeepers. The economy is in doldrums, economic progress has been ruined and recession is knocking at the door," the Congress leader said. To divert public attention from the economic mess, administrative bankruptcy, runaway inflation, recession and unacceptable unemployment, a deep-rooted conspiracy had been hatched to set a discourse to divide the countrymen based on religion, regionalism and language as also to subvert and undermine the Constitution, she said.
An atmosphere of disturbance, fear and insecurity has been foisted upon the country. she said and added, the government was trying to crush dissent. "Every individual voicing dissent is being trampled upon by the state's brute might," Sonia said.