Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi has once again stirred a big debate as said that the Emergency imposed in the country during the tenure of his grandmother the late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was wrong.
Gandhi, who was participating in a webinar organised by US university Cornell ina interaction with Prof Kaushik Basu also hit out at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).
“There is a fundamental difference between what happened in the Emergency, which was wrong, and what is happening now. Congress party, at no point, attempted to capture India’s constitutional framework. Our design doesn’t allow us that. Even if we want to do it, we can’t”.
Hitting out at the RSS, Gandhi alleged that democracy in India was being strangled by the systemic penetration of RSS in all institutions in the country.
“RSS is doing something fundamentally different. They are filling institutions with their people. Even if we defeat BJP in the election, we are not going to get rid of their people in the institutional structure” the Congress leader said.
“Modern democracies function because there is institutional balance in a country. Institutions that operate independently. That independence is being attacked in India. Now there is one big institution called RSS that is penetrating all Indian institutions. There is not a single one that is not being attacked and it is being systematically done…I would not say democracy is eroding, I would say it is being strangled,” he added.
When asked about his party’s internal democracy, the former Congress chief further said that apart from Congress no other party like BJP, BSP, and Samajwadi Party are questioned over its internal elections.
“I am the first person that says democratic election within the party is absolutely critical but it is interesting to me that this question is not asked about any other political party. Nobody asked why is there no internal democracy in BJP, BSP, and Samajwadi Party,” he said.
“But they ask about Congress because there is a reason. We are an ideological party and our ideology is the ideology of the Constitution, so it is more important for us to be democratic,” he added.