Congress protests across India after Rahul Gandhi disqualified as MP

The Congress leader was disqualified on 24 March after an order was issued by the Lok Sabha Secretary General Utpal Kumar Singh.

ByAjay Tomar

Published Mar 24, 2023 | 9:57 PMUpdatedMar 25, 2023 | 3:41 PM

Congress workers protest across India after Rahul Gandhi disqualified as MP (2)

Congress workers staged protests across the nation hours after former Congress president and Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi was disqualified as a Member of Parliament on 24 March, Friday, with effect from 23 March.

From Kerala to Delhi, Congress cadres took to the streets in support of Rahul Gandhi and raised slogans such as, “Rahul Gandhi you fight back, we are with you.”

Rahul was disqualified after he was convicted on Thursday by a Surat (Gujarat) court and sentenced to two years in prison in a defamation case over his 2019 campaign remark, “How come all thieves have Modi as the common surname?”

Meanwhile, several Congress leaders told South First that more protests would be launched against the decision in the coming days.

Protested across the country

In Telangana’s Sangareddy district, a rally was organised in Narayanakhed to protest against the criminal cases against Rahul Gandhi and the cancellation of his membership in Parliament.

The Block Congress Committee in Sulthan Bathery under Rahul Gandhi’s Wayanad Lok Sabha constituency also organised a protest march.

In Maharashtra, the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly staged a walkout as a mark of protest against the disqualification of Rahul Gandhi.

While asking Rahul Gandhi to fight back, the Opposition leaders raised slogans against the BJP-led Union government.

“Dictatorship will not work,” they chanted repeatedly.

In the national capital Delhi, the Congress workers took out a rally against the Lok Sabha and raised slogans in solidarity with Rahul Gandhi.

“Long live Rahul Gandhi,” the Congress cadres chanted.

Similar protests were organised by the Congress workers in Nagpur in Maharashtra and several parts of Uttar Pradesh — including state capital Lucknow, Jaunpur, and Amethi.

In Jaunpur, Congress supporters burnt an effigy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, whereas in Amethi slogans against the BJP government were raised: “First we fought the white people (Britishers), now we will fight the thieves.”

Related: Fighting for the voice of India, says Rahul Gandhi after being disqualified

Opposition protests in Parliament

Earlier in the day, senior leaders of non-Congress parties such as the DMK, National Conference, RSP, VCK, JD(U), CPI(M), SP, SS, IUML, AAP, and the CPI attended a meeting convened by the Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha in his office inside the Parliament complex.

Following the meeting, the Opposition MPs participated in a protest march from Parliament to Vijay Chowk, holding placards like “We demand JPC” and “Save LIC”, and a huge banner in front of them with “Democracy in Danger” written on it.

“We have been fighting for a JPC (Joint Parliamentary Committee) into the Adani case issue for months. They have a majority but the BJP is scared as there’s something fishy. We’ll keep fighting unitedly for it,” said Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge.

The AAP’s Sanjay Singh said Rahul Gandhi’s conviction showed that the Central government wanted to finish off the Opposition by slapping cases on them.

Related: Gujarat court sentences Rahul Gandhi to 2 years imprisonment