Sonia Gandhi takes 'assault on Constitution' dig at PM over Emergency remarks

Attacking PM Modi over his reference to the Emergency, Sonia Gandhi said it was an attempt to divert focus from the assault on the Constitution.
Sonia Gandhi takes 'assault on Constitution' dig at PM over Emergency remarks
Anjali Raj / Jaano Junction

With the first session of Parliament witnessing fiery exchanges between the government and the opposition over the post of deputy Speaker and NEET issue, Congress leader Sonia Gandhi said it showed Prime Minister Narendra Modi "valued confrontation" even though he preaches the "value of consensus".

In an editorial in The Hindu, Sonia Gandhi said PM Modi was yet to come to terms with the Lok Sabha poll results that saw the NDA return to power with a weaker mandate.

"The Prime Minister continues as if nothing has changed. He preaches the value of consensus but continues to value confrontation," the Rajya Sabha MP said.

"The first few days of the 18th Lok Sabha have sadly been far from encouraging. Any hope that we might see a changed attitude has been dashed," she further said.

The chairperson of the Congress Parliamentary Party said the post of the Deputy Speaker in Lok Sabha should have been given to the opposition as per the convention.

"This perfectly reasonable request was found unacceptable by a regime that had not filled the Constitutional position of Deputy Speaker in the 17th Lok Sabha," she said.

While M Thambi Durai of the AIADMK, a BJP ally then, was the Deputy Speaker in the first term of the NDA government, the post was vacant between 2019-24.


With the BJP going on the offensive against the Congress by raking up the Emergency, Sonia Gandhi said the issue was dredged up by the Prime Minister to divert attention from the assault on the Constitution.

Gandhi said it was "astonishing" that it was raked up even by the Speaker, "whose position is incompatible with any public political stance other than one of strict impartiality".

"It is a fact of history that in March 1977, the people of our country gave a categorical verdict on the Emergency, which was accepted unhesitatingly and unequivocally. That, less than three years later, the party that was humbled in March 1977 was returned to power, with a majority never achieved by Modi and his party, is also very much part of that history," she said.

The Emergency was also invoked by the President and the Vice President during their address to a joint sitting of Parliament, where they called it the "darkest chapter" and a "direct attack on the Constitution".


Hitting out at PM Modi for being silent on the NEET paper leak case, Sonia Gandhi said the scandal wreaked havoc on the lives of lakhs of our youth.

"The Prime Minister who does his 'Pariksha pe Charcha' has been conspicuously silent on the leaks that have devastated so many families across the country," she said.

The Congress MP underscored that the "professionalism" of educational institutions such as the National Council of Educational Research and Training, the University Grants Commission and universities have been "deeply damaged" in the last 10 years.


The former Congress chief also attacked the Prime Minister for not visiting strife-torn Manipur since ethnic clashes broke out in the state in May 2023.

Hundreds of people have been killed and thousands dislocated due to the clashes between the Kuki and Meitei communities.

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Sonia Gandhi takes 'assault on Constitution' dig at PM over Emergency remarks

"Social harmony in this most sensitive state has been shattered. Yet, the Prime Minister has not found either the time or the inclination to visit the state nor to meet with its political leaders," Gandhi wrote.

Source: India Today

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