NEW Delhi, July 26 (IANS): Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh has stirred a controversy by wiping his shoe with a garland of spun cotton (khadi) given to him as a token of respect by Congress workers at a function in Rajasthan, with his party on July 26, conveying its disapproval.
Congress general secretary Janardan Dwivedi conveyed the party’s disappointment over Ramesh’s action without directly naming him.
‘In the life of a nation, there are certain important symbols and one should be more careful and sensitive about them,’ Dwivedi said.
Ramesh attended a function in Bikaner district, where letters sanctioning the first instalment of grant under the Mukhyamantri Gramin BPL Awas Yojana were distributed. Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot was also present.
Reports said that khadi (hand spun cotton) garlands were offered to Ramesh by Congress workers. He first put these on a table on the dais and after some time cleaned his shoe with these.
Spun cotton has been part of the Congress tradition during the freedom struggle, with Mahatma Gandhi and many other leaders popularising its use.