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Rahul didn't say it: Congress

Special Correspondent

Denies having said he could have become Prime Minister at 25 "The write-up, projected as exclusive interview, contains several misrepresentations"

NEW DELHI: The Congress on Friday asserted that the party MP, Rahul Gandhi, did not give any interview to a newsweekly and disputed the contents presented from a "casual conversation," stating it contained several discrepancies and misquotes.

"Several discrepancies"

"It is unfortunate an informal interaction and casual conversation has been termed an interview. It contains several discrepancies and misquotes. We have checked it up with Rahul Gandhi,'' party spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said making a suo motu statement at a routine news briefing here.

Mr. Singhvi said Mr. Gandhi would like to state he did not give any interview to the Tehelka news weekly and the write-up, projected as an exclusive interview, contained several misrepresentations. In any event, it arose from a casual conversation.

"In particular, Mr. Rahul Gandhi would like to categorically state and reiterate that he never stated: `I could have been Prime Minister at the age of 25 if I wanted to... ' This and other remarks have been incorrectly reported and refuted outright," the spokesperson added.

He said Mr. Gandhi was surprised that this should happen in a publication, which held to a high level of journalistic integrity.

To questions whether Mr. Gandhi also denied having made remarks specific to the Bihar situation, Mr. Singhvi insisted that many remarks were reported incorrectly. The conversation as published was replete with inaccuracies and Bihar was an illustrative example.

Asked about the comment by the Janata Dal (United), Mr. Singhvi said that party's "melodramatic statement based on a wrong statement spoke of its bankruptcy."

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