Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi will deliver a lecture at prestigious University of California, Berkeley on September 11, according to reports. The lecture, titled as “India At 70: Reflections On The Path Forward” is sponsored by the Institute of International Studies and the Institute for South Asia Studies, Indian Express reported today. Currently, Gandhi is abroad and will likely return in the next few days. According to reports, after returning from abroad, he will address a workers’ meeting in Gujarat.
“Rahul Gandhi has led the reorganization of India’s Congress Party since becoming the vice president of the party in 2013. At UC Berkeley, he will offer his reflections on contemporary India and the path forward for the world’s largest democracy. He follows in the footsteps of his great grandfather Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first prime minister, who delivered a historic speech at Berkeley in 1949,” the university said on its website.
Meanwhile, Rights group Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) has called upon the university to withdraw the speaking invitation to Gandhi, citing the Congress party’s alleged role in the anti-Sikh riots that erupted following the assassination of Gandhi’s grandmother and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1984.
On June 13, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi had flown abroad on a short vacation to spend some time with his grandmother, days ahead of his birthday. “Will be travelling to meet my grandmother and family for a few days. Looking forward to spending some time with them!,” he had said on Twitter. Before that, he had travelled to get his mother Sonia Gandhi back from an undisclosed location, after she had travelled abroad for medical treatment for an unannounced ailment.