Rahul Gandhi conviction: Congress stages 'rail roko' in Tamil Nadu

Rahul Gandhi. File photo: PTI

Chennai: The Congress staged a rail roko in Kumbakonam and Virudhachalam in Tamil Nadu while party lawmakers resorted to a "black band" protest in front of the State Assembly here on Thursday condemning the sentencing of party leader Rahul Gandhi in a defamation case.

TNCC chief K S Alagiri, on a personal visit to Kumbakonam, resorted to a sudden rail roko, along with some party functionaries, at the railway station as news spread about a Surat court pronouncing its verdict on Gandhi in a criminal defamation case over his "Modi surname" remark.

"There was no direct reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Gandhi's election campaign. He had made a passing reference to those having a common surname," Alagiri later told reporters. He slammed the BJP government at the Centre for branding all those who opposed Modi as anti-nationals.

Alagiri, later boarded the Cholan Express to reach Chennai. Party cadres staged a rail roko in Virudhachalam, too.

A Surat court in Gujarat sentenced Rahul Gandhi to two years in jail in a criminal defamation for his Modi surname remark in the 2019 general election campaign in Karnataka in a case filed against the Wayanad MP by BJP legislator and former Gujarat Minister Purnesh Modi. The Congress leader was granted bail and given a month's time to respond.

Meanwhile, party MLAs led by Congress Legislative Party leader K Selvaperunthagai staged a sudden agitation in front of the Tamil Nadu Assembly here sporting black bands on their foreheads. They raised slogans condemning the Central government. Legislators Ruby Manoharan, J G Prince, and S Vijaya Dharani were among those who participated. The sudden agitation caused some commotion in the area.

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