Combative Rahul Gandhi takes on PM Modi, govt over foreign policy, Adani row
In his 40-minute speech, Rahul Gandhi made sharp attacks on the BJP-led government over the Adani Group controversy.
Congress MP Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday alleged India's foreign policy under the BJP-led ruling dispensation has aligned with the interests of billionaire industrialist Gautam Adani. Participating in the debate on the Motion of Thanks to the President’s Address in Lok Sabha, Rahul Gandhi was backed by several Opposition leaders, including those from the Trinamool Congress, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and the Communist Party of India, while union minister Smriti Irani and BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad led the counter-attack. (Also Read | Rahul Gandhi's ‘of course I can’ as BJP opposes naming top official in Lok Sabha)
Some of Gandhi's comments were later expunged from the record.
The Congress leader linked deals by Adani in other countries in what was seen as a veiled reference to the Rafale deal controversy.
He also cited a report that quoted the former chairman of Sri Lanka's Ceylon electricity board as saying that then President Gotabaya Rajapaksa told him that Modi ‘pressured’ him to give a wind power contract to Adani.
The person in question later retracted his statement, and Rajapaksa denied the interaction.
BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad accused Rahul Gandhi of making baseless, shameless and reckless allegations against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and said the Congress itself was involved in "big scams" which "tarnished" the image of the country.
"Rahul Gandhi made baseless, shameless and reckless allegations against PM Modi," Prasad told reporters outside Parliament.
"The Congress and its leaders were involved in all those big scams which tarnished the image of India," he added.
Prasad also referred to the National Herald case and the AgustaWestland scam case to attack the Gandhi family. "It's time to revive the memory of Rahul Gandhi on corruption."