Parliament, judiciary, media all under ‘brutal attack’ in India: Rahul Gandhi

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Congress leader Rahul Gandhi stepping up his attack on the BJP government has said that the structures of Indian democracy are under “brutal attack” and there is a full-scale assault on the institutions of the country.

The Opposition leader, who is in the UK told reporters in London that there are conversations ongoing within the Opposition to unite around an alternative vision for the country and act upon an “undercurrent of anger” over pressing issues such as unemployment, price rise, the concentration of wealth and violence against women.

The 52-year-old former Congress president referred to the income tax department’s recent survey action against the BBC offices in New Delhi and Mumbai as an example of the “suppression of voice across the country”, which he described as an expression of voice against the ruling BJP’s attempt to silence the country.

“The media, the institutional frameworks, judiciary, Parliament is all under attack and we were finding it very difficult to put the voice of the people through the normal channels,” he said.

“The BBC has found out about it now, but it has been going on in India for the last nine years non-stop. Everybody knows that, journalists are intimidated, they are attacked, and threatened. The journalists who toe the line of the government are rewarded. So, it’s part of a pattern and I wouldn’t expect anything different. If the BBC stops writing against the government, everything will go back to normal. All the cases will disappear,” he noted.

Mr. Gandhi expressed regret that democratic parts of the world, including the U.S. and Europe, have failed to notice that a “large chunk of democracy has come undone”.

“The BJP wants India to be silent. They want it to be quiet… because they want to be able to take what is India’s and give it to their close friends. That’s the idea, to distract the population and then hand over India’s wealth to three, four, five people,” he said.

Mr. Gandhi has earlier said at Cambridge University that Indian democracy is under attack and several politicians, including himself, are under surveillance.

Mr. Gandhi is in London as part of a week-long visit to the U.K. for a lecture as visiting fellow at the University of Cambridge and is scheduled to interact with the Indian diaspora today.

He is also being hosted at an event in the House of Commons complex on behalf of the U.K. Opposition Labour Party and will address the Chatham House think-tank in London on the Russia-Ukraine conflict and wider geopolitical issues before concluding his visit to Britain.

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