Rahul Gandhi says parliament removal linked to comments on billionaire Adani
New Delhi, Mar 25 (EFE).- Prominent Indian opposition leader Rahul Gandhi on Saturday linked his recent disqualification as a lawmaker over defamation charges to his criticism of the billionaire businessman Gautam Adani.
“I have been disqualified because the prime minister (Narendra Modi) is scared of my next speech (…) is going to come on to Adani, I have seen it in his eyes,” Gandhi, one of the most powerful politicians of the opposition Indian National Congress party, said at his first press conference since he was convicted on Thursday and removed as a lawmaker Friday.
A local court handed Gandhi a two year prison sentence for defaming Modi in 2019 remark in which he asked why “all thieves have Modi as (their) common surname.”
The opposition leader said he would appeal the ruling but the conviction has already led to his ousting from parliament.
Gandhi said he would continue to question the links between Adani and Modi. Opposition parties in India have called for a parliamentary inquiry into the matter after the United States investment group Hindenburg Research alleged the Adani Group had been involved in stock manipulation and fraud.
“I will keep asking questions on the Adani issue, they cannot scare me by disqualification or putting me in jail. I won’t back down,” Gandhi said.
“For this government, the country is Adani and Adani is the country.” EFE