Rejecting the suggestion that the Central government was able to take unilateral decisions because of a weak Opposition, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said “give me free Press and other key institutions and this (Narendra Modi) government will not last long.”

He pointed out that the Opposition in any country functions within a framework, including the media, the judicial system and institutions that protect the voice of the people. “In India, that entire framework has been controlled and captured by the BJP government, the entire architecture designed for giving voice to the people has been captured,” he added.

The Modi government has taken control of all the key institutions, and it has done so not democratically but forcibly, Rahul told a Press conference here on the third and final day of his Kheti Bachao Yatra in Punjab against the black Farm Laws. The BJP government has captured the soul of the country, which is what the Congress is fighting, he said, adding that this fight will become more and more aggressive, going forward.

Terming the control of institutions by the government a big problem, Rahul noted that no other country in the world today is faced with a situation where even the Media does not question the government when its land has been seized by another nation.

Modi, he said, is not interested in India’s people but is only concerned about protecting and promoting his image, which would have got dented had he admitted to China’s incursion. The media, by helping promote his image, is also to blame, said Rahul, adding that Modi was comfortable in the knowledge that the Press would project his onesided statements. “Why don’t you question him at Press conferences,” he asked the media.

Rahul, however, said while the government may have captured the institutions, the fact is they cannot control farmers, the youth and the small traders, whose interests they are destroying.