Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has broken his silence on the coercive action taken by Twitter against him and his senior party colleagues allegedly under pressure from the central government.
Gandhi, who has not been able to tweet since 6 August, took to Instagram to write, “They can lock us out on a platform but they can’t lock out our voice for the sake of the people.”
He added, “If showing compassion and empathy is a crime, then I am guilty. If fighting for justice for a rape and murder victim is a crime, then I am guilty.”
The Congress leader continued, “The message of compassion, love and justice is universal. 1.3 billion Indians will not be silenced.”
He concluded with a message that read, “Don’t be afraid. Truth always prevails.”
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This is the first time that Gandhi has publicly spoken about Twitter’s decision to lock his account allegedly under pressure from the BJP government. The BJP had accused Gandhi of committing a crime by revealing the identity of the parents of a 9-year-old Dalit rape victim from Delhi. The girl was raped and allegedly burnt alive by a Hindu priest in the heart of Delhi.
Gandhi had met the grieving family before sharing the video of his interaction with them.
Twitter has, meanwhile, locked the accounts of the almost entire top leadership of the Congress, evoking angry reactions from netizens, who felt that this was a brazen attempt to silence the opposition in India. On Thursday, it was revealed that Twitter had also locked the official account of the Congress party.
Many were quick to accuse Twitter of hypocrisy for not acting in a similar fashion against the BJP’s IT Cell chief, Amit Malviya, when he revealed the identity of the parent of the Hathras rape and murder victim.