Rahul Gandhi said on Tuesday he was ready to take over as the president of the Congress but it was up to the party to elect him to the post.
Gandhi made the comments at the University of California, Berkeley, where he also took a broad swipe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s economic policies, including the scrapping of high-value banknotes and the bumpy rollout of a goods and services tax(GST).
He accused the government of pursuing divisive politics and doing little to stop vigilante violence and attacks on liberal activists and journalists. His comments triggered angry protests from the BJP, with cabinet minister Smriti Irani calling him a “failed dynast” who chose to speak in the United States because nobody was listening to him in India.
Gandhi kicked off a two-week tour of the United States with Tuesday’s speaking assignment at the UCB. He also took several questions after a speech on ‘India at 70: Reflections on the Path Forward’.
Asked if he was ready to take charge of his party before the 2019 national elections, the 47-year old Congress vice president said he was “absolutely ready to do that”.