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Barbs fly at MEA meet on G20 as Rahul Gandhi defends his UK speech

The Congress MP said he did not ask any other country to intervene

MEA-Meet The image shared by EAM S Jaishankar after chairing the Parliamentary Consultative Committee for External Affairs on India’s G20 Presidency | Twitter

The Parliamentary Consultative Committee meeting chaired by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on G20 witnessed some heated moments after a BJP MP raked up Rahul Gandhi's UK speech issue at the meeting.

Rahul, who was present at the event, defended his stance, stating that he only spoke about India's democracy and cannot be labelled "anti-national" for that.

EAM Jaishankar was giving a detailed presentation on the G20 presidency to the committee members, including Rahul Gandhi, when a BJP MP raked up the UK speech issue, stating that some political leaders trying to score brownie points by talking about Indian democracy on foreign land, reported ANI.

Rahul immediately responded that the statement was an "indirect reference to him."  He stated that his speech and criticism were against an individual, who was named in a report,  and not against the government. Rahul Gandhi added that an individual industrialist was not the government as was perceived. He further stated that he did not speak in a manner that the BJP claimed he did and hence cannot be called an "anti-national."

He said he had not asked for the intervention of any foreign country on the matter. "Indian democracy is under attack, and that is evident," he said. 

While a few BJP MPs said this was not the appropriate platform to speak on this topic, Congress MPs supported Gandhi's right to clarify or defend himself. Some BJP MPs went on to raise the issue of emergency and said some people are trying to divert the attention from India's G20 presidency.

Following this, the EAM intervened and asked the Congress MP to not speak on the issue on this platform but the Parliament. He asked Rahul to speak only on the subject of the committee and not political topics.

Congress MP Shashi Tharoor also tweeted about the meeting, hinting at the altercation that happened at the meeting. "A good meeting of the ConsultativeCommittee on ExternalAffairs today on India’s foreign policy objectives in the G-20 was somewhat marred by some members needlessly politicising the discussion. @RahulGandhi robustly responded to them & it ended with an amicable group photograph," his tweet read.

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