Sonia re-elected as Congress Parliamentary Party chief, slams PM Modi

Referring to the tussle between the Opposition and the government in the last 10 years, Gandhi cautioned that Parliament cannot be muzzled and stifled anymore.
Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge with party leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi at the Central Hall of Parliament in New Delhi on Saturday.
Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge with party leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi at the Central Hall of Parliament in New Delhi on Saturday.Photo | PTI

NEW DELHI : Days after its impressive performance in Lok Sabha elections, the Congress on Saturday unanimously re-elected former party president Sonia Gandhi as the chairperson of the Congress parliamentary party.

Addressing the Congress MPs after her re-election, Sonia launched a sharp attack against Prime Minister Narendra Modi stating that he is swearing in today though he suffered a political and moral defeat.

“The Prime Minister, who sought the mandate solely in his name to the exclusion of both his party and its allies, has suffered a political and moral defeat. In reality, he has lost the mandate he sought and thereby lost the right to leadership as well. Yet, far from taking responsibility for failure, he intends to get himself sworn in again,” she said.

At a meeting of the party MPs at the Central Hall of Parliament, Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge proposed Sonia’s name as the chairperson of the parliamentary party.

Exhorting MPs to be vigilant and proactive in holding the new NDA government accountable, she said that Parliament cannot be bulldozed as the government has been for a decade. “We don’t expect him to change the substance and style of his governance, nor take cognizance of the will of the people,” said the Rajya Sabha MP.

Referring to the tussle between the Opposition and the government in the last 10 years, Gandhi cautioned that Parliament cannot be muzzled and stifled anymore.

“No longer will the writ of the ruling establishment be permitted to disrupt Parliament, whimsically mistreat members or push through legislation without due and proper consideration and debate. No longer can and should Parliamentary Committees be ignored or bypassed like they have been since 2014. No longer will Parliament be muzzled and stifled as it has been over the past 10 years. We have challenging times ahead,” she said.

In this election, people have voted decisively to reject the politics of divisiveness and authoritarianism, she said. “They have voted to strengthen parliamentary politics,” said Gandhi, adding that many people wrote the obituary of the Congress.

INDIA bloc won’t attend Modi swearing-in: Jairam

INDIA bloc will not attend the swearing-in ceremony of Modi, Congress leader Jairam Ramesh told this newspaper on Saturday. He said the INDIA bloc has not yet got invitations for the ceremony on Sunday. He said, “When we get an invite, we will think about it.”

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