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Cong hits back at BJP for criticising Rahul's remarks

Press Trust of India, New Delhi, Sep 21 2017, 20:49 IST
Vice-President of the Indian National Congress party Rahul Gandhi poses for a photograph in New York. Reuters photo

Vice-President of the Indian National Congress party Rahul Gandhi poses for a photograph in New York. Reuters photo

The Congress today hit back at the BJP over its allegation that Rahul Gandhi brought ignominy to India on foreign soil, claiming it was Prime Minister Narendra Modi who did so and asked him to "apologise" to the country.

Recalling the party vice president's comments made during his ongoing US tour on various issues including unemployment and intolerance, senior Congress leader Anand Sharma said what Gandhi spoke was "apt".

He said the party was proud of him for having the strength to "speak the truth".
"The BJP has created an atmosphere of violence, fear, terror. Rahulji spoke only on what the ground realities are... Modiji himself had tarnished India's image abroad. The prime minister should apologise to the country," Sharma said.

He claimed that the prime minister had said India was a corrupt country and that the people would feel ashamed of calling themselves as Indians for 60 years before the BJP came to power.

"Rahulji made the comments on the pain felt by the country. This is his right. To say it is not his right, then a minister or a BJP spokesperson who said it is insulting democracy," Sharma said.

Congress' chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala also stressed that what Gandhi spoke was "apt".

"He (Gandhi) drew attention towards the issue of intolerance, the encroachment BJP has done on democratic institutions. These are issues NRIs have to pay attention to. We are proud of Rahulji," Surjewala said.

Gandhi, while addressing students at the Princeton University in the US yesterday, had said leaders like Modi and President Donald Trump were elected as the people were in pain due to unemployment.

He, however, had stressed that even the prime minister was not doing enough to solve the key problem.

Taking to Twitter, the Congress vice president today said that most people he met during his two-week-long US tour were "worried" about what has happened to India's tradition of tolerance.

The BJP has been accusing Gandhi of tarnishing India's image abroad by his comments.

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