Jaipur: The Congress will strive to get party leader Rahul Gandhi’s Lok Sabha membership restored quickly so that he is able to speak on the Manipur violence and on the no-confidence motion, top leaders of the party said on Friday.
“We shall sit in front of Speaker Om Birla’s house the whole night to force him to reverse Rahul’s expulsion and restore his membership without delay,” Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury told a joint press conference addressed by party president Mallikarjun Kharge.
Senior advocate and party leader Abhishek Singhvi, who secured the relief for Rahul, said he would go back to the top court if the Speaker delays restoration of Rahul’s membership. The court order is clear that membership has to be restored as the cause of its termination was the conviction that has been quashed by the top court, he contended.
Rahul was disqualified within 24 hours of the Surat court order and it is to be seen when he is reinstated he said, stressing that the Speaker did not take advice of the law ministry while disqualifying him.
The Supreme Court order will reach the Lok Sabha secretariat on Friday or Saturday, warranting the Speaker to act upon it, Singhvi said.
Victory of truth
In a brief statement, Gandhi said: “There truth emerges victorious either today, tomorrow or a day after. My goal is clear. I know what I have to do. I have been working all time with this clarity. Thanks to all those who helped as also to the people who gave me love and support. Come what may, my duty remains the same. Protect the idea of India.”
Kharge called the judgment a “victory of the people, victory of the voters and that of the people of Wayanad who elected Rahul to the Lok Sabha....This is not Rahul Gandhi’s victory, but the victory of India. Rahul’s honesty and national interest were seen in his walk of over 4,000 km from Kanyakumari to Kashmir to meet all sections of the people.”
Chowdhury, meanwhile, urged Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Rajendra Agrawal presiding over Lok Sabha proceedings to let Gandhi attend the House in view of the Supreme Court's ruling. “Our leader Rahulji got relief from the Supreme Court. I demand from the Chair to allow him to attend the House at the earliest,” Chowdhury said
Agrawal, however, said it is for the Speaker to take cognisance of the development.
Rahul Gandhi is our prime ministerial candidate, says Gehlot
Rajasthan Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Ashok Gehlot, meanwhile made it clear that Gandhi is the prime ministerial candidate for the Congress as he is the only one who can compete against Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “When Rahul Gandhi is the face of our party, there is no other name,” Gehlot said at a press conference in Jaipur about his prospects of becoming a prime ministerial candidate if the Congress wins in Rajasthan.
Gehlot also clarified that he will do politics only in Rajasthan and called himself “Janta ka Sevak”.