Home/ News / India/  Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar accused of being BJP’s ‘cheerleader’: Not the first time he's accused of bias

The Congress has criticised Jagdeep Dhankhar, the Vice President of India and Rajya Sabha Chairman, for attacking Rahul Gandhi's remarks in the UK. According to Congress general secretary in-charge communications Jairam Ramesh, Dhankhar's criticism was "both confusing as well as disappointing".

Ramesh argued that the vice president should remain neutral as an umpire and not act as a "cheerleader" for the ruling government. He added that Gandhi's remarks were factual and representative of the reality on the ground.

In his speech, Gandhi had claimed that opposition MPs' microphones were often turned off during parliamentary proceedings. Dhankhar, on the other hand, said that such denigration of India's democratic values was misplaced.

The Congress general secretary in-charge organisation, K C Venugopal, also criticised Dhankhar, saying that misrepresenting parliamentary proceedings was unbecoming of his office. He called on the vice president to ensure that opposition MPs were given ample space to raise issues of public importance.

Also Read: Dhankhar calls upon young minds to think out of the box

The Congress has been the most consistent voice in opposition to the ruling regime, Ramesh said. He added that dissent was not a betrayal of the Constitution but a necessary aspect of democracy.

Dhankhar's remarks serve to underscore the actions of the ruling government, which has suppressed the voices of the opposition, blacked out channels and newspapers, and intimidated institutions that were previously independent, Ramesh said.

Also Read: ‘Aapne kitni baar pyar kiya hai?’: Congress MP asks Chairman Jagdeep Dhankar in Rajya Sabha

The Vice President's comments on this occasion and others only highlight the need for a free and independent press and democratic institutions, Ramesh added.

Dhankar-Mamata clash

Soon after taking office in Kolkata Raj Bhavan as the West Bengal governor, Jagdeep Dhankhar began posting criticisms of the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress (TMC) government on his official Twitter account.

The long-running conflict between West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and the governor came to a head in February 2022 when Didi blocked Dhankhar on Twitter. Dhankar’s role in the state, according to the TMC, was to work as a "BJP mouthpiece" and operate in accordance with the Centre’s strategies against the state government.

Sounak Mukhopadhyay
Sounak Mukhopadhyay, who also goes by the name Sounak Mukherjee, has been producing digital news since 2012. He's worked for the International Business Times, The Inquisitr, and Moneycontrol in the past. He's also contributed to Free Press Journal and TheRichest with feature articles. He covers news for a wide range of subjects including business, finance, economy, politics and social media. Before working with digital news publications, he worked as a freelance content writer.
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Updated: 10 Mar 2023, 10:01 AM IST
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