Another bridge collapses in Bihar, 13th such accident in 3 weeks
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Another bridge collapses in Bihar, 13th such accident in 3 weeks

Raebareli/Lucknow (UP), July 10: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday met the mother of Kirti Chakra awardee Captain Anshuman Singh, who later spoke out against the Agnipath programme and appealed to the government not to divide the army into two categories.

Her appeal came after Gandhi questioned the Agnipath agenda and alleged that Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had “lied” in Parliament over compensation to the families of murdered Agnipath members.

“I appeal to the government not to divide the army into two categories,” Manju Singh, the mother of the deceased captain, told reporters after meeting Gandhi at a guesthouse in Raebareli.

The four-year service commitment is not appropriate because the laid-off Agnive employees will have difficulty finding another suitable career, she said, while raising concerns about an Army program launched in 2022 to recruit soldiers on a short-term basis.

“They (Agniveers) will be mentally and physically weak after four years, after which they will not be able to continue their studies… this is not good,” she added.

Her son was posthumously awarded the Kirti Chakra, India’s second-highest peacetime gallantry award, by President Droupadi Murmu on July 5.

Captain Singh died in July last year while saving people from a major fire.

When he returned to Delhi, Gandhi was asked about the meeting with the army officer’s mother. He said he would speak about it in Parliament.

Gandhi called the martyr’s family who lived in Lucknow to meet them at the guest house.

After meeting the Congress leader, the deceased captain’s mother told reporters that Gandhi had assured their family all possible support.

“Gandhi said he had asked the government to end the Agniveer programme as it was not suitable for the army,” she said.

During his visit to Raebareli, Gandhi, the leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha, also visited the AIIMS branch there and met party workers and local people of his constituency.

After landing at the Chaudhary Charan Singh airport in Lucknow, Gandhi left by road for Raebareli, which is about 80 km from the state capital. Party activists and leaders were at the Lucknow airport to bid a warm farewell to Rahul Gandhi.

On his way to Raebareli, he stopped at the Churwa temple near Bachhrawan and paid homage to Lord Hanuman.

“Rahul Gandhi prayed at the Churwa Hanuman temple and prayed to Lord Hanuman for the happiness, peace and prosperity of the country,” the Congress party said in its X programme.

Gandhi reached the Bohemian guest house where he met party workers, delegations, including from the Indian Industries Association (IIA), and local residents, a local party leader said.

He also visited the martyrs’ memorial at Lalganj and laid a wreath and planted a sapling there. He also visited AIIMS-Raebareli.

In the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections, Gandhi won from Rae Bareli Lok Sabha constituency by a margin of over 3.90 lakh votes.