Tripura chief minister Biplab Deb’s clumsy attempt at dodging a reporter’s poser on mob lynching in the state has put him in a spot once again.
In a video footage of Deb’s interaction with the press on Wednesday at the newly renamed Agartala airport, a reporter sought his comment on lynching, and he replied, “I think that you all should think that today there is a wave of happiness in Tripura. You should also enjoy this happiness wave and you will also become happy. And you think for once…. Look at my face, how happy I am.”
By “happiness”, Deb was referring to the renaming of the Agartala Airport as Maharaja Bir Bikram Manikya Kishore Airport, after the former king. The state BJP or the chief minister’s office is yet to issue any statement clarifying the comment.
On June 28, Tripura saw three lynching — of a public announcer hired to dispel rumours, a hawker from Uttar Pradesh and an unidentified woman — after rumours of “child-abductors” and “kidney-smugglers” spread across the state. The Tripura Police have made multiple arrests,and began intensive community engagement programmes in the sensitive pockets.
The Chief Minister has been roasted on social media multiple times for his unscientific and misogynistic comments since the 49-year-old became the chief minister dislodging the Communist regime.
Earlier, Deb had said at a public event that internet and satellite existed in the times of the Mahabharata, to claim scientific superiority over the Europeans and Americans.
He had to apologise for questioning the rationale behind the crowning of Diana Hayden as Miss World 21 years ago by saying “Aishwarya Rai represents the Indian women” in the true sense.
The Tripura chief minister also claimed that the international beauty contests were a farce as the results were all predetermined.
“Whoever contested the international beauty pageants won. For five consecutive years, we won the Miss World/Miss Universe awards. Diana Hayden won it too. Do you think she should have won the title?” Deb said.