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Protesters: Democracy is murdered


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Some Indians were outraged at the idea of having a prime minister born outside the country.
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NEW DELHI, India (CNN) -- CNN's New Delhi Bureau Chief Satinder Bindra is covering the political turmoil in India. He spoke to CNN International Anchor Richard Quest.

Quest: It's fair to say that in all your years covering Indian politics you haven't seen anything like this before?

Bindra: And I doubt I'll be able to see it again. What a roller coaster. Five days ago no one would have thought Sonia Gandhi would have won this election. Then no one would have imagined that an Italian-born politician would have become prime minister of the world's largest democracy.

Sonia Gandhi was well positioned to take the prime minister's job. And who would have thought that she would have said no? And after she said no, who would have thought we would see the intensity of the feelings on display right here, right now?

About a half-hour ago the Congress party held a news conference, senior Congress leaders came up and said to Sonia Gandhi: "You must reconsider your decision not to become prime minister."

Even as these leaders were speaking, Congress party leaders and functionaries became increasingly agitated, they broke some window panes.

They have been increasingly disappointed that Sonia Gandhi is not respecting the mandate of the people. People here feel that if Sonia Gandhi does not take this country's top job, then "democracy will have been murdered." Demonstrations are growing, and people here are continuing to chant slogans.

Quest: Would you be a fool enough to predict how this will play out in the next 12 hours?

Bindra: I'd rather not make any predictions. Making predictions in this kind of atmosphere is almost impossible. What I can say now is that these protests, or this entire mission of support for Sonia Gandhi, will continue for several hours. Beyond that, who knows, absolutely impossible to predict. There are so many twists in this story already.


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