The Congress on Thursday termed as "daylight murder of democracy" the way 12 of its 18 MLAs in Telangana quit the party to join the ruling TRS.
Party spokesperson Pawan Khera said this was not a healthy practice for the country and it amounted to butchering of people's mandate, which the people of the southern state would never forgive.
"The way the people's mandate and democratic norms are being butchered, this is something which India should not get used to. Indians should not get used to this kind of daylight murder of democracy," Khera told reporters.
He said just because somebody was in power, had access to resources and thought he could control agencies, "it does not mean he has got unbridled powers and that he should misuse those powers and kill democracy".
Khera said these 12 MLAs were elected by the voters, who rejected the TRS and voted for the Congress.
"This is a murder of their mandate. India may ignore it today, but it will never forget this daylight murder of democracy," he added.
Asked if there was any kind of allurement or pressure, the Congress leader said journalists would be better placed to find out what all had been happening in Telangana.
"As a political activist, we know what is happening. I would love it when you go there and say it because people will take you more seriously than me," he said.
In a big jolt to the Congress in Telangana, 12 of its 18 MLAs sought a merger of their group with the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) on Thursday.
The lawmakers met Assembly Speaker Pocharam Srinivas Reddy and gave him a representation in this regard after Tandur MLA Rohith Reddy became the 12th Congress legislator to jump the ship, boosting the strength of the defectors to two-thirds of that of the Congress Legislature Party in the southern state.
Since early March, 11 Congress MLAs had switched sides, before Reddy moved over to the ruling camp on Thursday.
The grand old party's strength in the 119-member House came down to 18 when Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee president N Uttam Kumar Reddy tendered his resignation from the Assembly on Wednesday, after being elected to the Lok Sabha from Nalgonda in the recently-concluded election.
Two-thirds of the MLAs of a party can form a separate bloc and the anti-defection law does not apply to them, according to the Representation of the People Act.