Rahul Gandhi, a Congressman, said on Thursday that his comments were not “anti-Indian”, adding ” If they will allow, I will speak inside the parliament.” Rahul Gandhi, a Congress member, responded for the first time on Thursday to criticism levelled at his speech in London by stating that he did not say anything “anti-Indian” and added, “If they would allow I will talk within the house.”
Rahul Gandhi’s recent address at Cambridge University, in which he claimed that Indian democracy was under threat and that various leaders, including himself, were being watched, sparked controversy. Rahul Gandhi outlined five main areas of the alleged assault on Indian democracy during his speech, including the seizure and control of the media and judiciary, surveillance and intimidation, coercion by federal law enforcement agencies, assaults on minorities, Dalits, and tribals, and stifling of dissent. Rahul Gandhi, a Visiting Fellow at the Cambridge Judge Business School, held a lecture on the subject of ‘Learning to Listen in the 21st Century’ on March 1.
Following his speech, the Bharatiya Janata Party has been pressuring Gandhi to apologise for trying to portray India as a developing nation while going abroad. On Monday, Union Minister Piyush Goyal suggested that Rahul Gandhi visit the Parliament building and extend an apology to the members of the House as well as the Indian people. The BJP caused a stir over Gandhi’s remark, and since the Budget Session began on March 13 there have been multiple adjournments of Parliament. Gandhi also asserted in his speech that the country’s media, courts, and parliament were under pressure.
“Everybody knows and it’s been in the news a lot that Indian democracy is under pressure and under attack. I am an Opposition leader in India, we are navigating that (Opposition) space. The institutional framework which is required for a democracy — Parliament, free press, the judiciary, just the idea of mobilisation, moving around — all are getting constrained. So, we are facing an attack on the basic structure of Indian democracy,” Rahul Gandhi stated.