Protestors lobby Brent MP over invite to ‘Butcher of Gujurat’
- Credit: Archant
More than 100 protesters gathered in Wembley today to lobby a Brent MP over an invitation to a controversial politician from India.
The action against Barry Gardiner, Labour MP for Brent North, who chairs the Labour Friends of India, took place outside Brent Civic Centre during his surgery.
Protest organisers South Asia Solidarity Group want Mr Gardiner to withdraw his invitation to Narendra Modi, the chief minister of Gujarat, to speak in the House of Commons on ‘The Future of Modern India.’
Mr Modi, who has declined the invitation, has been dubbed the ‘Butcher of Gujurat’ by critics who accuse him of being responsible for the horrific attacks on Muslims in Gujarat in 2002 when more than 2000 people were killed.
However an investigation has cleared him of any wrongdoing.
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Sujata Aurora, a protestor from Willesden Green, said: “It went really really well.
“There was a really good turn out of up to 100 people or more.
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“We were really pleased with the wide cross section of people and the different human rights organisations there.
“Barry Gardiner did attempt to justify himself but it was apparent he has not listened to us.
“To say Modi was absolved is not true.
“He’s unapologetic about his political relationship with Narendra Modi,
“We are quite determined to expose this relationship.
“He (Modi) has not ruled out attending.
“Barry Gardiner’s invite still stands, we are on our guard.
“We are not going to let him or Barry Gardiner off the hook.”
The protest also included a theatrical stunt portraying the relationship between Mr Gardiner and Mr Modi which Ms Aurora said was well received.
Mr Gardiner told the Times Mr Modi is “someone of huge importance to the future relationship between India and the UK.”
He added that the the accusations against him were exhaustively investigated by the special investigating tribunal of the supreme court of India in a process initiated under a congress party.