Indian democracy under attack, politicians under surveillance: Rahul at Cambridge Univ lecture

New Delhi: Indian democracy is under threat, senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said during a lecture at Cambridge University, claiming that several politicians, including himself, are under surveillance.

Gandhi made the comments during his lecture on “Learning to Listen in the 21st Century”, which was shared on Twitter by Congress leader Sam Pitroda, ex-adviser to former prime minister Manmohan Singh.

Raking up the Pegasus snooping issue, Gandhi alleged that the Israeli spyware was installed on the phones of a large number of politicians, including him.

“Indian democracy is under pressure and under attack. The institutional framework which is required for a democracy… Parliament, free press, the judiciary, just the idea of mobilisation–these are all getting constrained. We are facing an attack on the basic structure of democracy,” he said.

Gandhi noted that in the Constitution, India is described as a Union of States and that Union requires negotiation and conversation.

“It is that negotiation that is under attack and threat…there is also attack on minorities and press.

“A large number of political leaders have Pegasus on their phones. I myself had Pegasus on my phone. I’ve been called by intelligence officers who say please be careful of what you say on the phone as we are recording the stuff,” the former Congress chief claimed.

“I have got a number of criminal liable cases registered against me for the things which shouldn’t be under criminal cases. As the Opposition, it is very difficult to communicate with people when you have this type of an assault on media and on the democratic architecture,” he said.

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