Rahul Gandhi, the leader of India’s opposition, reiterated his belief on Thursday that the opposition can defeat the ruling party in the 2024 elections.
Gandhi, a Congress Party member who was speaking at the National Press Club in Washington, was ejected from the Indian parliament after being found guilty of defamation in March for comments he made during a 2019 election campaign.
“I think the Congress Party will do very well in the next election. I think it will surprise people,” he said, before referring to Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). “Just do the math, a united opposition will defeat the BJP on its own.”
He charged Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi with polarizing, dividing, and planning a “capture of the institutions” in his nation.
In India, the country with the largest population in the world (1.4 billion people), a diverse population of religious beliefs, and a secular constitution, Modi and his BJP party favor Hindu hegemony.
But according to Gandhi, the ruling party fostered “a clampdown on the institutional framework that allowed India to talk, that allowed Indian people to negotiate.”
Gandhi’s trip to the US takes place just a few weeks before President Modi’s state visit, which will take place on June 22 and be met at the White House with much pomp.
Gandhi was found guilty of defamation, and after losing his appeal in April, he was no longer able to engage in political activity.
Gandhi, the prominent member of his rival party, claimed that his “disqualification” was actually “an advantage.”