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People talking about freedom of speech should remember Emergency days: Naidu

Union minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday said there is total freedom of expression in India and those who complained about freedom of speech now should remember the Emergency.

“India is the first and foremost a country where there is total freedom of speech and expression. Total. You can call the Prime Minister by any name. You call him Hitler, you call him Mussolini… You can write articles,” the information and broadcasting minister told the media in Panaji.

“People talking about freedom of expression should remember the Emergency where lakhs of people were put in jail. When all media was censored. Fundamental rights were broken. All this happened during Congress rule,” Naidu said when asked to respond to criticism of the Centre by the Church in Goa.

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Reacting to criticism of cashless and digitalisation initiatives, Naidu said: “It is their view. The country’s view is this is long overdue. There is a parallel economy going on in the country.”

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People talking about freedom of speech should remember Emergency days: Naidu