Rahul Gandhi asked to respond to notice on comments about Narendra Modi in Parliament
BJP MPs Nishikant Dubey and Pralhad Joshi had filed a complaint against Gandhi after he accused the prime minister of favouring the Adani Group.
The Lok Sabha Secretariat has asked Congress MP Rahul Gandhi to reply to a breach of privilege notice filed against him for his comments on Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Parliament last week, NDTV reported on Sunday.
Bharatiya Janata Party leaders Pralhad Joshi and Nishikant Dubey had filed complaints against Gandhi. The Congress leader has been asked to submit his reply by Wednesday.
While speaking in Parliament on February 7, Gandhi had accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of favouring the Adani Group. The Congress leader had said that while he was leading the Bharat Jodo Yatra from September to January, the public asked him about Adani’s success and how he was able to expand his business in several sectors.
“The youth asked us that Adani’s business is now in eight to ten sectors and how his net worth reached $140 billion from $8 billion between 2014 and 2022,” Gandhi said. “They asked me what is his [Adani’s] relationship is with India’s prime minister.”
He also pulled out a picture of the tycoon and the prime minister on a private jet and said, “So this is the relationship.”
As the House proceedings started the next day, Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi told the Speaker that according to rules, a notice needs to be served beforehand if any MP wants to make allegations against another. BJP MP Nishikant Dubey also wrote to the Speaker alleging Gandhi of misleading the House by accusing Modi of crony capitalism without any documentary evidence.
Eighteen remarks – all of them related to Adani – made by Gandhi in his speech in the Lok Sabha had also been expunged.
The ongoing Budget session of Parliament has witnessed repeated adjournments and uproar with the Opposition parties demanding a joint parliamentary committee investigation into allegations of unfair business practices by the Adani Group.
The conglomerate headed by India’s second-richest person Gautam Adani has been under the scanner since American short-seller Hindenburg Research, on January 24, accused it of pulling off the “largest con in corporate history”.
The report claimed that the conglomerate has over the decades been involved in stock manipulation, accounting fraud, used offshore shells for money laundering and siphoned money from listed companies. Since the report was released, Adani Group companies have lost above $100 billion in a rout in the stock markets.