Freedom of speech suspended, dissent labelled as terrorism: Sonia Gandhi

Updated: 26 October, 2020 16:42 IST | IANS | New Delhi

In an article published in a newspaper and later released by the Congress, she alleged that the Indian economy was in deep crisis

Congress President Sonia Gandhi
Congress President Sonia Gandhi

Ahead of the Bihar Assembly elections, Congress President Sonia Gandhi has attacked the Modi government for what she called "targeting political opponents and civil society members" and cautioned that the world's largest democracy was at the crossroads as "dissent was stifled as terrorism or branded anti-national activity".

In an article published in a newspaper and later released by the Congress, she alleged that the Indian economy was in deep crisis.

"But what is less appreciated is that all the pillars of a democratic system of the governance are under assault. The fundamental right to freedom of expression has been systematically suspended through suppression and intimidation. Dissent is deliberately stifled as 'terrorism' or branded as an 'anti-national activity'," Sonia Gandhi said.

The opposition leader said that the Indian state had diverted attention from the "real problems" of the people by pronouncing bogus threats to 'national security' everywhere.

"Of course, some of these threats are real and have to be dealt with uncompromisingly but the Modi government and the ruling BJP conjure up sinister conspiracies behind every political protest, indeed behind any and everything they see as opposition to them."

The system unleashes investigative agencies on dissenters and deploys proxies through sections of the media and online troll factories. "India's hard-won democracy is being hollowed out," Sonia wrote.

The Congress leader also attacked the Modi government by saying that "every organ of the State that could possibly be used to target political opposition has already been pressed into service -- the Police, the Enforcement Directorate, the Central Bureau of Investigation, the National Investigation Agency (NIA), and even the Narcotics Control Bureau".

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First Published: 26 October, 2020 13:55 IST

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