Congress calls Rahul's detention 'undemocratic', while BJP brands him 'tragedy tourist'

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The BJP and the Congress have locked horns over the arrest on Rahul Gandhi when he was enroute violence hit Mandsaur on Thursday.

Rahul, who was arrested under section- 151 of the IPC in Neemuch, lashed out at the Narendra Modi governement over the treatment meted out to the agitating farmers in madhya Pradesh.

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi

Senior Congress leader and former defence minister A K Antony said that Rahul had every right to visit Mandsaur and express solidarity with the farmers.

"The Madhya Pradesh Government's reaction of preventing Rahul Gandhi from visiting Mandsaur is totally undemocratic," news agency ANI quoted Antony as saying.

Despite curfew being in force and administration having denied permission for anyone to visit Mandsaur, Rahul Gandhi left for Madhya Pradesh's violence-hit area to meet the agitating farmers on Thursday. He was then arrested at the Madhya Pradesh-Rajasthan border and was subsequently left on bail.

Following the incident, BJP leader G. V. L. Narsimha Rao told ANI that Rahul was indulging in political tourism to draw people's attention.

BJP leader Zafar Islam said that Rahul was a 'tragedy tourist' who visited Mandsaur like places to grab cheap publicity.

[Mandsaur limps back to normalcy, curfew lifted partially]

Rahul's visit can be seen as an attempt to make foray into the BJP stronghold. The state has been continuously voting for the BJP since 2003.

A farmers' agitation demanding loan waivers and higher crop prices in Madhya Pradesh spread to large parts of the state with protesters torching vehicles, targeting police stations and attacking government officials.

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