Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Wednesday said Congress leader Rahul Gandhi was not the only politician who has lost membership of the legislature after being convicted by a court and there was nothing to create a hue and cry about it.
Speaking at the 'News 18 Rising India' programme, Mr Shah said Mr Gandhi should go to a higher court to fight his case. Instead, Mr Shah added, he has been trying to put blame on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
"He has not appealed to take stay on his conviction. What kind of arrogance is this? You want favour. You want to continue as an MP and will also not go before the court," he said, adding from where such arrogance comes from.
"This gentleman is not the first one. Politicians who held much bigger positions and with much more experience have lost their membership because of this provision," the Home Minister said.
He said as many as 17 politicians, including former Chief Ministers Lalu Prasad (Bihar) and J Jayalalithaa (Tamil Nadu), were convicted by the courts when they were either member of an assembly or the Parliament and they had much more experience than Mr Gandhi.
The Home Minister said it was Gandhi who tore an ordinance during the previous UPA government which could have helped him now.
He said it's the law of the country that anyone who is convicted by a court lose his or her membership of either Parliament or assembly.
“The Congress has many big lawyers and some of them are Rajya Sabha members. They should advise him about the legal issues,” he said.
Asked about the immediate notice to Mr Gandhi to vacate his official residence, Mr Shah said there was no hurry and it was just a natural process.
“It is the law of the country that all of his speeches in Parliament would have to be removed from the records from the moment he was convicted. Even if his disqualification notice was served a few days later, it would have made no difference,” he said.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)