Will they suspend over 230 MPs this time: Gogoi
June 11, 2024  14:18
Gaurav Gogoi with Priyanka Gandhi Vadra in Delhi yesterday
Gaurav Gogoi with Priyanka Gandhi Vadra in Delhi yesterday
The BJP's approach to parliamentary democracy will not change as long as Prime Minister Narendra Modi is at the helm but in footballing terms, the "wall of defenders" is now bigger and much more robust with over 230 INDIA bloc MPs in the Lok Sabha, says Congress' Gaurav Gogoi. 

 In an interaction with PTI editors at the news agency's headquarters in New Delhi, Gogoi also predicted that the coalition NDA government will not last a full term, saying Modi's leadership style does not inspire confidence that he can complete five years successfully. 

"I do see that in the 236 MPs of the INDIA bloc, we will have a Parliament where they cannot bulldoze bills, intimidate us, suspend us. They had suspended 146 MPs (last year), will they suspend 236 this time?" the deputy leader of the Congress in the previous Lok Sabha said. 

 Gogoi dismissed suggestions that NDA allies TDP's Chandrababu Naidu and JD(U)'s Nitish Kumar gave in to the BJP on government formation, saying they have "extremely shrewd political minds" and should not be judged quickly as "only time will tell what their true intentions are". 

 Fresh from his Lok Sabha polls triumph from the BJP stronghold of Jorhat in Assam with a massive margin of over 1.44 lakh, the Congress leader said he does not expect the BJP's approach to parliamentary democracy to change till the time Modi is the prime minister. 

 "He simply does not have the flexibility to change his approach even within his own party... the PMO will direct the cabinet colleagues. Even now his allies will keep demanding special status, caste census, revoking Agnipath but I don't think his approach to allies will change," he said. 

 "Till the time Modi is there as PM, I don't think their approach to Parliament is going to change. They will still try to bulldoze, suspend, disqualify, poach. But yes, as in football, while there were three defenders (earlier), our wall (of defenders) is now bigger and much more robust," Gogoi said during the interaction. 

 "That is our (opposition's) role and that is what the public expects from us, that is what the public voted (elected) us for, that is what we hope to do," Gogoi said. 

 He said the story of this election is that the people of India have taught a "lesson in humility" to Prime Minister Modi. 

 Gogoi, the son of late Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi, said that with the numbers that the elections have thrown up and the prevailing circumstances, he does not think Modi has the ability to run a coalition government. 

 "Mr. Modi doesn't even take his cabinet into confidence. When he did demonetisation, the finance minister did not know. When he abrogated Article 370, his cabinet did not know. When he brought Agnipath, his cabinet did not know. So, someone who cannot even take his cabinet into confidence, how will he take the NDA alliance into confidence?" he said.

 Gogoi said that for a coalition government to function smoothly, as it did under former prime ministers Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Manmohan Singh, one needs to have an open mind, an inclusive approach and the ability to listen and be flexible.
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