February 9, 2021 2:32:33 am
The tussle in the Congress, which came to the fore after 23 senior party leaders wrote to Sonia Gandhi, came up for mention in Rajya Sabha. None less than Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a reference to “G-23” while taking a swipe at the Congress. Modi praised Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad, saying he avoids using harsh words. He recalled that Azad had praised holding of DDC polls in Jammu and Kashmir. The PM added with a smile, “but I fear — you have praised… I am confident that people in your party will take it in the right spirit and not mistake it as an opinion of G-23 and do something opposite.”
Respect For ‘Elderly’
explaining that the Opposition wanted a separate debate on farmers but decided to resume the discussion on motion of thanks after Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s appeal, Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury referred to Singh as “buzurg (elderly)”. While Singh just smiled, BJP MPs were not so amused. Realising the goof-up, Chowdhury later explained that he meant to say “varisht” (respected) but ended up saying “buzurg”.
Making A Point
BJP MP Locket Chatterjee’s reference to former President late Pranab Mukherjee triggered protests in Opposition benches. Congress MP Hibi Eden stood up raising point of order, saying her remark — that Mukherjee used to advise the BJP — should not go on record. Speaker Om Birla said there is no point of order in the debate on motion of thanks. Eden waited for Chatterjee to conclude, and insisted on raising it. When Birla refused again, he started banging the rulebook on the glass shield, provoking the Speaker to warn him. With Eden persisting, Birla allowed him to speak. Although he pointed out that Chatterjee made a personal reference by way of making an allegation imputing a motive, the Speaker said he did not think the member made such remark, but he would look into the records. Congress and TMC MPs were seen appreciating Eden for his persistence.
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