Am Hopeful of Being Allowed to Speak in Parliament, Says Rahul Gandhi

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NEW DELHI – Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, at the centre of a controversy over his remarks in the UK which have led to parliamentary proceedings being disrupted, said that he is hopeful that he will be allowed to speak in Parliament on Friday.

Gandhi said that he had met Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla on Thursday, and as four ministers have spoken against him, so he has the right to speak in the house.

“I am hopeful that I will be allowed to speak at the floor of the house as an MP, I have responsibility to the parliament,” he said, but added that he doubts that he will be allowed and this is the “test of democracy”.

“… I spoke about Adani in parliament but it was expunged… the government and Prime Minister are fearful about Adani. This is distraction as the PM wants to avoid questions on the issue,” he said while addressing a press meet.

Gandhi added, “As an MP, my first responsibility is to reply in the Parliament. After that, I can discuss my comments in detail with you. Before that, I would not get into details. If Indian democracy is functioning well, then I will be able to say my piece.” Mr. Gandhi did not take any questions from reporters.

Earlier, Gandhi said he will speak in the house, if allowed and he has not spoken anything which is anti-India.

Asked by reporters in the Parliament if he will apologise for his remarks, he said: “I haven’t spoken anything that is anti-India.”

Parliament was adjourned for the day on Thursday amid ruckus by treasury and opposition members in both Houses.

As soon as the Lok Sabha convened for the day at 11 a.m., opposition members rushed towards the Speaker’s podium, shouting slogans and waving placards seeking a JPC probe in the Adani matter.

Treasury benches, on their part, also were seen shouting slogans, demanding Gandhi’s apology for his remarks during his speech in London last week, where he had said that democratic values were under threat in India. -IANS

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