By: Shubham Ghosh
With chaos continuing to disrupt proceedings in both Houses of the Indian parliament, sources in the country’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday (17) said they would not allow Indian National Congress parliamentarian Rahul Gandhi speak in the parliament until he apologised for his recent remarks made over the Indian democracy in London.
India’s NDTV confirmed this.
Both Houses were adjourned during the day amid sloganeering from the saffron party seeking Gandhi’s apology and that from the opposition demanding a joint parliamentary committee probe into the Adani Group row.
The Congress alleged that microphones of the opposition leaders were muted in the parliament and slammed prime minister Narendra Modi.
“Earlier, the mic used to be turned off, today even the proceedings of the House were muted. The house is mute for PM Modi’s friend,” the grand-old-party said in a tweet posted in Hindi.
Gandhi, who represents Wayanad in the southern state of Kerala in the Lok Sabha or Lower House of the parliament, was seen in the House for the second time since the row erupted over his remarks made in the UK. The 52-year-old leader said he wanted to respond to allegations that the BJP brought against him inside the House but the ruling party was adamant that he should apologise before anything.
BJP national spokesperson Shehzad Poonawalla called Gandhi’s remarks “egregious and gravely offensive” and said the latter should apologise outside before seeking recourse in the parliament.
“It is sad that the EGO on 1 Parivar is above INSTITUTION OF PARLIAMENT (sic)? Rahul has made an egregious & gravely offensive remark against our sovereignty by demanding foreign intervention on foreign soil If he is serious about Parliament he should have apologised immediately outside before seeking recourse in Parliament You cannot undermine Parliament & then seek its recourse Pehle Maafi Maango Desh se (first apologise to the nation),” he tweeted.
Minister Anurag Thakur also lashed out at Gandhi saying the Congress leader was defaming the same parliament that he is a part of. He said Gandhi doesn’t know that the House is run by procedures and polices and alleged that the opposition leader does not read and rarely attends the parliament.
“Telling one lie after another has become his habit. You lied, and tried to show that you are bigger than the parliament, bigger than the country. He should apologise unconditionally,” Thakur added.
Several other BJP ministers have slammed Gandhi, accusing him of spreading lies and maligning India’s image abroad.
BJP national president JP Nadda on Friday said thatGandhi has become a permanent part of the “anti-nationalist toolkit”.