India's Congress leader Rahul Gandhi disqualified from parliament

Rahul Gandhi, a senior leader of India's main opposition Congress party, arrives to appear before a court in Surat in the western state of Gujarat, India, March 23, 2023.
PHOTO: Reuters

NEW DELHI — India's parliament on Friday (March 24) disqualified the leader of the main opposition Congress party, Rahul Gandhi, a day after a court jailed him for two years in a defamation case loosely linked to the prime minister, parliament said in a statement.

Gandhi "stands disqualified from the membership of Lok Sabha", parliament said, referring to the lower house of parliament.

Congress members held protests in some parts of the country on Friday against Gandhi's conviction and two-year-old jail sentence.

Congress party officials have described the judgement as politically motivated and blamed the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.