The lower house of the Indian parliament on Friday began to debate the no-confidence motion.The first to speak was an MP from the TDP, who moved in the motion against the government followed by Rakesh Singh, a lawmaker from the BJP before Rahul Gandhi’s turn came.
Both Jayadav Galla and Rakesh Singh spoke without any disruption until Congress President Rahul Gandhi began his speech. He started with a direct attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, mocking his failure to deliver election promises made during 2014 Lok Sabha polls.
Accusing Modi of indulging in jumla (fake promises) strike, he launched a blistering attack against the prime minister and his party president, Amit Shah. But, the BJP MPs continued to heckle him, in a bid to disrupt him from carrying on with his speech. Unsurprisingly, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, made no considerable effort to ensure an uninterrupted speech by the Congress president.
BJP MPs causing disruption to Rahul’s speech became the dominant theme of social media conversations as lawyers and journalists expressed their outrage. Lawyer Prashant Bhushan wrote, “the manner in which BJP is disrupting Rahul Gandhi’s speech in the #NoConfidenceMotion, especially when he spoke of Rafale deal, JayShah, Ambani, Adani, NiMo, State of women & lynching shows it’s nervousness on being exposed on economy, law&order, corruption & crony Capitalism.”
Journalist Kunal Purohit tweeted, “For a man who they keep calling a failed leader, BJP MPs are surely spending a lot of their energy screaming down every line by @RahulGandhi.”
Perhaps realising the BJP’s game plan to not allow the opposition to speak in order to avoid the visible embarrassment, Rahul stressed that what he was going to speak was important, Rahul said, “The prime minister and Mr Amit Shah are two very different types of politicians. They are not like any of us.
“The difference between all of us and the prime minister and the president of the BJP is whereas we are okay to lose power, we can see ourselves in being power and out of power, for reasons that everybody knows here, the prime minister and the president of the BJP can simply not afford to lose power. Because the moment they lose power, other processes will start against them. So the prime minister and his president act out of fear and this fear generates anger.”
He then thanked Modi, the BJP and the RSS for making him understand the true meaning of the Congress and being an Indian. “The true meaning of being an Indian is that you respond with love even when you are attacked and abused. This, I’ve learnt because of Narendra Modi, the BJP and the RSS,” he said.
Rahul went on to add that Modi and the BJP may well continue to mock him by addressing him as pappu, but he was not going to lose his respect for the prime minister.
“Thank you so much for teaching me my dharma and the importance of being a Hindu and I would like to sincerely thank you for that. You have hatred and anger for me. You can call me pappu and abuse me. But I only have love and respect for you. Because I am Congress. I am confident that one day I will convert all of you into a Congress person,” Rahul thundered.
He then walked up to Modi and gave him a hug. Modi was first seen getting annoyed by this unwanted hug, but perhaps he changed his facial expression after realising that he was being watched by millions across India. Modi then called Rahul back to his chair and fondly patted him on his back.