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Election 2024

If it's a prime ministerial debate with Modi, is Rahul INDIA bloc's PM candidate? asks Smriti Irani

Rahul Gandhi, who is contesting from Kerala's Wayanad and Uttar Pradesh's Rae Bareli seats, accepted an invitation to a public debate with PM Modi on the Lok Sabha polls. The invitation was extended by former Supreme Court judge Madan B Lokur, former High Court Chief Justice AP Shah, and senior journalist N Ram.

News Arena Network - New Delhi - UPDATED: May 12, 2024, 09:38 AM - 3 mins read

Rahul Gandhi, who is contesting from Kerala's Wayanad and Uttar Pradesh's Rae Bareli seats, accepted an invitation to a public debate with PM Modi on the Lok Sabha polls. The invitation was extended by former Supreme Court judge Madan B Lokur, former High Court Chief Justice AP Shah, and senior journalist N Ram.

If it's a prime ministerial debate with Modi, is Rahul INDIA bloc's PM candidate? asks Smriti Irani

Smriti Irani, who defeated Rahul Gandhi in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections by a margin of 55,120 votes, has said the 'person who does not have the courage to contest against a normal BJP worker in his so-called castle, should refrain from boasting.' (PTI/FILES).


Union minister Smriti Irani has asked if Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is the prime ministerial candidate of the INDIA bloc if he has accepted an invitation by retired justices and a journalist to a debate even as he chose not to contest in  Amethi where Irani defeated him in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections by  a margin of 55,120 votes.

 

In the United States, presidential debates occur between the main candidates for the American president, both before and after the primary elections.

 

The INDIA bloc, an alliance of opposition parties aiming to defeat the BJP in the Lok Sabha elections, have not announced a prime ministerial candidate as yet even as Modi remains the BJP's face and the party's star campaigner.

 

Much is being made of in the media of Rahul Gandhi accepting an invitation to public debate with Prime Minister Narendra Modi over key election issues, Irani said, even though he did not have the courage to contest her in Amethi, said to be the Gandhi family's bastion, where she defeated him in 2019. 

 

"The person who does not have the courage to contest against a normal BJP worker in his so-called castle, should refrain from boasting," Irani told a news agency.

 

If he wanted to sit at PM Modi's level, "I want to ask him if he is a PM candidate of the INDIA bloc?" questioned Irani, the BJP candidate from Amethi.

 

 Rahul Gandhi, who is contesting from Kerala's Wayanad and Uttar Pradesh's Rae Bareli seats, accepted an invitation to a public debate with PM Modi on the Lok Sabha polls. The invitation was extended by former Supreme Court judge Madan B Lokur, former High Court Chief Justice AP Shah, and senior journalist N Ram.

 

The debate according to Rahul Gandhi would help people understand the leaders' respective vision and enable them to make "an informed choice". 

 

Gandhi also said he or Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge would be pleased to participate.

 

Kharge too was attacked by Irani for questioning the voter turnout data in the Lok Sabha elections.

 

The Congress leader had written to the INDIA bloc allegeing discrepancies in the voting data released by the Election Commission (EC), adding in an 'X' post later that the EC's credibility was at an all-time low.

 

The Congress talked about counting people's wealth, showing the way to take away half of the property of the citizens, Irani said. It wants to reverse the decision on the Ram Temple. These were national issues. Not just the PM, every citizen has a right to have an opinion on the issue, she added.
 

 

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