In a veiled attack on Congress leader Rahul Gandhi over his remarks regarding microphones of the Opposition being turned off in Parliament, Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar on Saturday said there cannot be a bigger lie to set a narrative and pointed out that such a thing was done during the “black chapter” of Emergency, but it is not possible now.
The Vice President said temples of democracy cannot be allowed to be outraged and lamented that “some people” are trying to undermine the achievements of the country due to their short-sightedness.
“Democratic values are important and we cannot allow temples of democracy to be outraged as we are the mother of democracy,” Dhankhar, who is the chairman of Rajya Sabha, said while addressing a gathering at the Chaudhary Charan Singh University in Meerut.
#WATCH | Meerut: “I am Chairman of Rajya Sabha, Lok Sabha is a huge panchayat where mics have never been turned off. Someone goes out & says mics are turned off in this nation…yes there was a time during Emergency when mics were turned off”: Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar pic.twitter.com/izXBuKcYEg— ANI (@ANI) March 11, 2023
On Rahul Gandhi’s microphone remarks, the Vice President, said, “There cannot be a bigger lie when someone tries to set a narrative by saying that in the biggest panchayat, the Parliament, mics are switched off. Out of short-sightedness, some people do not display control over their voice and say anything in order to undermine the massive achievements of this great nation.”
The former Congress chief recently told British parliamentarians in London that functioning microphones in Lok Sabha are often silenced against the Opposition.
Dhankhar said it was his constitutional duty “to indicate to the world at large that mics are not switched off in India’s Parliament”.”There was a time when it was done and it was a black chapter that we call Emergency, but it is not possible now,” he said.
The vice president also said it is “saddening” to see that some people say “what is going on in the country”.
“Which other country can claim that their judiciary acts with lightning speed, but our Supreme Court does work like this. We are the world’s most functional democracy, no other country can make such a claim that they have democracy from panchayat (grassroots) to municipality to state and up to the Centre. There can be opinions but it (India’s democracy) is vibrant and functional,” Dhankar said.
During his UK visit, Gandhi also alleged that the media, the institutional frameworks, the judiciary, and Parliament is all under attack. He had also expressed regret that democratic parts of the world, including the US and Europe, have failed to notice that a “large chunk of democracy has come undone”.
Dhankhar had on Thursday attacked Gandhi on his microphone remarks saying he would be on the “wrong side” of the Constitution if he stayed silent on the issue.