Pradeep Pattanayak

The heat over Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's disqualification as the Member of Parliament (MP) was also witnessed in the Odisha Legislative Assembly on Friday. 

As the House assembled, the members of the Congress party started creating a ruckus over their leader being disqualified after a court in Surat convicted him and sentenced him to two years in jail.  

Rahul was convicted in a defamation case filed by BJP MLA Purnesh Modi over the former's remark, "How come all thieves have common surname Modi?"

Reacting on the development, senior Odisha Congress leader Narasingha Mishra said dictatorship has been established and democracy destroyed.  

“You didn’t even give 24 hours time to him (Rahul Gandhi). When the Cuttack MLA was convicted by the court, the Odisha Legislative Assembly hadn’t disqualified him immediately. The magistrate has given a month’s time but you didn’t give him even 24 hours. With this, the dictatorship has been established and democracy destroyed,” said Mishra. 

Leader of Opposition (LoP) & BJP MLA, Jayanarayan Mishra said, “The rule was formulated during their time. In this regard, nobody is to do anything. He has been punished for two years and consequently, he has been disqualified as a Member of Lok Sabha. This has been done as per the rule.” 

Odisha Revenue Minister and BJD leader, Pramila Mallik said, “The Biju Janata Dal has nothing to say in this regard. Whatever has been done is in accordance with the direction of the Court. For us, the BJP and the Congress are equal. BJD members don’t have to give any statements on this issue.”