New Delhi [India]: Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Friday hit out at the Centre over Rahul Gandhi’s disqualification from the Lok Sabha saying it was the price he paid for raising the Adani issue in Parliament.
Rahul was disqualified from the Lok Sabha following his conviction by a Surat court in a 2019 criminal defamation case. “Whether it is the spokesperson for the BJP or minister or MP or the Prime Minister himself, from morning to evening, they talk about my family, about Rahul Gandhi, my father, my mother, about Indira-ji and about Pandit Nehru-ji. They keep criticizing us. No court or judge sentenced or disqualify them. My brother raised the Adani issue in Parliament and asked questions of the government. This is why he was disqualified as an MP,” Priyanka told reporters on Friday.
“This government does not want to give any answers on the Adani issue. It is afraid of questions that we have been raising both inside and outside of Parliament, which is why Rahul has been disqualified from the Parliament,” she added.
The Congress leader said her party was undeterred by what transpired on Friday and will fight back.
“The Congress will fight, Rahul Gandhi will fight, we all will fight. The blood that runs in our veins is the same as our martyrs. The blood that repeatedly call dynastic and criticize again and again was shed for this country. We will not back down, we are not afraid. We will keep fighting. Let them do whatever they want,” she said.
Meanwhile, Opposition leaders on Friday came out in support of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi in the wake of his disqualification as a member of the Lok Sabha, calling it a “black day” for Indian democracy.
Reacting to his disqualification as a member of the Lok Sabha, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Friday said he was fighting to restore the country’s voice and will pay any price to do so.
“I am fighting for the voice of India and am ready to pay any price (for it),” Gandhi tweeted in Hindi.
His tweet followed his disqualification as a Lok Sabha MP earlier on Friday. The disqualification came in the wake of Rahul’s conviction by a Surat court in a 2019 defamation case on Thursday.
The disqualified Congress MP was sentenced to two years in prison following his conviction for a remark using the surname ‘Modi’ at a campaign event for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, in Karnataka.
However, the court later approved his bail on a surety of Rs 15,000 while suspending his sentence for a period of 30 days during which he can challenge his conviction at a higher court.
Meanwhile, the Congress on Friday came down heavily on the Centre over Rahul’s disqualification as a Lok Sabha member, calling it a “strangulation of democracy” while exuding confidence that the disqualification will be revoked through a stay on his conviction by a higher court.
The party alleged that Rahul’s disqualification is part of a “pattern” to stop him from speaking out against the Central government and also an attempt to divert public attention from real issues.
Addressing a press conference at the party headquarters in the national capital, Congress national spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi and senior leader Jairam Ramesh lashed out at the Centre over the disqualification of the former national party president.
“The issue before us is political, more than it is legal. It is a political issue because it signifies the systematic, repetitive emasculation of democratic institutions by the ruling party. It signifies the strangulation of democracy itself. We know that defamation is an exception to free speech, but over the last several years, we have had repeated examples of unthinkable assaults on freedom of speech, more importantly, freedom after speech. We all know that Rahul Gandhi has been speaking fearlessly inside and outside Parliament. He is paying a price for it,” Singhvi said.