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Controversy erupts over ‘Rashtrapatni’ remark; Adhir Ranjan has apologised, says Sonia

In view of controversy surrounding Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury’s ‘Rashtrapatni’ remark, Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Thursday said she was unnecessarily being dragged into the controversy.

SNS | New Delhi |

A full scale controversy erupted after BJP MPs demanded an apology from Congress leader Sonia Gandhi on the alleged derogatory remarks made by Congress floor leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury on President Droupadi Murmu.

Chowdhury on Wednesday courted controversy after he referred to President Droupadi Murmu as ‘Rashtrapatni’ in the Lower House.

In view of controversy surrounding Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury’s ‘Rashtrapatni’ remark, Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Thursday said she was unnecessarily being dragged into the controversy.

Supporting Chowdhary, Gandhi said that he has already apologised.

Reacting over the same, Adhir Ranjan said, “‘Rashtrapatni’ remark was a slip of tongue, will apologise to President.”

After the House adjourned on Thursday, Gandhi walked up to an agitated Rama Devi and reportedly told her that when Adhir Ranjan has already apologised, why was she being dragged into it?

Later BJP leader Smriti Irani who was also present, tried to intervene. However, Gandhi asked her not to speak her. Later, Supriya Sule of NCP from opposition benches and Pralhad Joshi from the Government’s pacifed the agitated members, sources said.

Taking to Twitter, Jairam Ramesh said: “Atrocious and outrageous behaviour by Union Minister Smriti Irani in the Lok Sabha today! But will she be pulled up by the Speaker? Are rules only meant for the Opposition?”

Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury issued a statement and said that it was a slip of tongue and mistake was committed “The BJP is creating a furore which was by mistake while speaking on the subject. I made a mistake, just once.

He said he had apologised for it and BJP is making a mountain out of mole.
Sonia Gandhi too said that he has apologised and tried to pacify the opposition MPs when the incident took place.

Meanwhile, BJP national spokesperson Sambit Patra on Thursday said Congress president Sonia Gandhi must apologise to the nation over party leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury’s “derogatory” remark against President Droupadi Murmu.

Sonia Gandhi, Adhi Ranjan Chowdhury and NK Suresh met the Lok Sabha Speaker and requested Lok Sabha Speaker to give him a chance to speak on the floor of the House on the allegations made against him for his ‘Rashtrapatni’ remark.

The Lok Sabha was adjourned till 4 pm on Thursday amid ruckus created by the BJP over Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury’s remarks addressing President Droupadi Murmu as “Rashtrapatni”.

Besides, three more MPS, two from Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and one Independent, were on Thursday suspended from the Rajya Sabha for the remainder of this week on charges of disrupting the proceedings of the House.

Those suspended from the House are AAP MP Sushil Kumar Gupta and Sandeep Kumar Pathak as well as independent MP Ajit Kumar Bhuyan. With this move, the total number of MPs suspended from the Rajya Sabha since Tuesday reached to 23.

Deputy Chairman Harivansh Narayan Singh announced their suspension said that they entered the well of the House, shouted slogans and displayed placards by disrupting the proceedings in utter disregard to the House and the authority of the Chair.

(With inputs from agencies)