Published On: Tue, Apr 11th, 2023

BJP lashes out at Sonia Gandhi for ‘lecturing’ PM Narendra Modi on democracy

New Delhi: The BJP on Tuesday lashed out at UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi over her strongly-worded editorial in an English daily in which she accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the NDA government at the Centre of ‘systematically dismantling all three pillars of India’s democracy.’ In a quick rebuttal, Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju slammed the former Congress president and stated that “the Indian democracy was dead only once in 1975. And then after, it never happened again and won’t happen ever.”

Congress talking about the independence of the Judiciary is An illusory statement of the highest improbity

Terming Sonia Gandhi’s editorial as “an illusory statement of the highest improbity,” the Union Law Minister said that the BJP “believes in the rule of law.” “The spirit of democracy is very much alive in the country. Ask all questions to the elected government, but don’t question your own country,” Rijiju added.

Rijiju also mocked ex-Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi over his disqualification from the Lok Sabha – after a Gujarat court convicted him in the 2019 ‘Modi surname’ case – and said, “I am observing very closely that the person who speaks the most, inside and outside Parliament, is saying he cannot speak.”

Coming back to the UPA chairperson, the BJP leader said, “Smt Sonia Gandhi is lecturing about Democracy? Congress talking about the independence of the Judiciary is An illusory statement of the highest improbity.”

Rijiju’s colleague in the Union Cabinet and Minister Dharmendra Pradhan also slammed Sonia Gandhi over her extremely critical editorial published in a national daily. Responding to it, Pradhan called the editorial a ‘classic example of Modi hatred, misplaced priorities and overestimation of relevance at the national level’.

“Congress leadership must come out of their illusion and wake up to the ground reality— India’s democracy is flourishing, people know PM Modi’s intentions and that is why they believe and bless him,” Pradhan tweeted. Pradhan, the union education minister, slammed the Congress and called the editorial a ‘classic example of Modi hatred, misplaced priorities and overestimation of relevance at the national level’.

The sharp rebuttal from the ruling BJP came shortly after Sonia Gandhi made a scathing attack on the Narendra Modi-led NDA government at the Centre and accused it of systematically dismantling the three pillars of democracy. Writing a column for a prominent English daily, the UPA chairperson said that the government was blaming past leaders for today`s ills and ignoring the most pressing and vital issues of the day.

Sonia Gandhi further stated that the government`s deep-rooted disdain for democracy and democratic accountability was disturbing. “The people of India have learnt that when it comes to understanding today`s situation, Prime Minister Narendra Moth`s actions speak far louder than his words. His statements – when he is not venting anger on the Opposition or blaming past leaders for today`s ills – either ignore the most pressing, vital issues of the day or are platitudes and verbal gymnastics to gloss over or distract from these issues. His actions, on the other hand, leave little to the imagination on the government`s true intentions,” Sonia stated in her piece.

She further claimed that he is silent on legitimate questions about his government`s actions affecting millions` lives. “Enforcing silence cannot solve India`s problems. The Prime Minister is silent on legitimate questions about his government`s actions which affect the lives of millions. After failing on his promise to double the income of farmers by 2022, the Prime Minister has conveniently fallen silent. But their problems of rising costs and unremunerative prices for their crops remain here and now,” her column read.

The former Congress president also accused PM Modi of dismantling all three pillars of democracy. Invoking the logjam in the Parliament, she said it was a ploy to prevent the Opposition from raising issues of grave concern to the country and its people. “Over the past months, we have witnessed the Prime Minister and his government systematically dismantling all three pillars of India`s democracy – the legislature, the executive and the judiciary, with their actions demonstrating a deep-rooted disdain for democracy and democratic accountability. Consider the first recent goings-on in Parliament.

In the last session, we saw a government-led strategy to disrupt Parliament and prevent the Opposition from raising issues of grave concern to the country and its people, such as unemployment, inflation and social divisions, and discussing the year`s Budget and the Adani scam among other vital issues,” Sonia wrote.

“The systematic effort to undermine the credibility of the judiciary has reached crisis point, with the Union Law Minister calling some retired judges “anti-national”, and warning that “they win pay a price”. This language is deliberately chosen to misguide people, inflame their passions, and thereby intimidate serving judges,” she added.

Sonia further said that Congress is determined to continue its fight to safeguard the voice of the people. “The Congress party will make every effort to take its message directly to the people, as it did in the Bharat Jodo Yatra, and will join hands with all like-minded parties to defend the Constitution of India and its ideals. Ours is a fight to safeguard the voice of the people. The Congress party understands its solemn duty as the principal Opposition party and stands ready to work with all like-minded parties to fulfil it,” her column read.

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