Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Friday alleged that India is witnessing the ''death of democracy'' and anybody who stands against the onset of dictatorship is ''viciously attacked''.
Addressing a press conference at the AICC headquarters here ahead of the nationwide protest by the Congress against price rise and GST on essential items, he said the Gandhi family is attacked because it fights for democracy and for communal harmony. Gandhi charged that the sole agenda of the government is that people's issues such as price rise, unemployment and violence in society must not be raised.
There is no democracy in India and there is a dictatorship of four people, he alleged.
''What we are witnessing is the death of democracy. That is what India is witnessing. What India has built brick by brick, starting almost a century ago, is basically being destroyed in front of your eyes,'' Gandhi, who was flanked by party leaders Jairam Ramesh and Ashok Gehlot, said.
''All of you know it, all of India knows it. Anybody who stands against this idea of the onset of dictatorship, does not matter who he is, where he comes from, which state, which religion, male or female, that person is viciously attacked, put in jail, arrested, beaten up,'' he said.
The idea is that people's issues, whether they are price rise, unemployment, violence in society, must not be raised, Gandhi said.
He alleged that the government is being run to protect the interests of four-five people and this ''dictatorship'' is being run in the interest of ''two-three big business people by two people''.
Asked about the questioning by the Enforcement Directorate of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and him in the National Herald case, he said, ''Question all you want, there is absolutely nothing there, everybody knows it''.
''My job is to resist the idea of the RSS and the more I do it, the more I will be attacked. I am happy, attack me,'' he said.
Gandhi asserted that the government can ''continue scaring'' them, it will not make a difference.
To another question, he said, ''They attack the Gandhi family because we fight for an ideology and there are crores of people like us. We fight for democracy, for communal harmony and have been fighting for years. Only I did not do this. This has being done for years, my family members have given their lives,'' he said, adding that this is ''our responsibility''.
''When India is divided and Hindus-Muslims are made to fight then we feel pained, when someone is assaulted for being Dalit, we are pained, when a woman is beaten up, we are pained that is why we fight. This is not a family, this is an ideology,'' he asserted.
The Congress is set to hold nationwide protests and will also 'gherao' Prime Minister Narendra Modi's residence against price rise, unemployment and GST hike on some essential items.
Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha MPs of the party will also hold a ''Chalo Rashtrapati Bhavan'' (march to Rashtrapati Bhavan) from Parliament to register the protest against price rise and unemployment. In all capital cities, the state units would organise a gherao of Raj Bhavans in which MLAs, MLCs, former MPs and senior leaders will participate.
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