New Delhi: Amid backlash over the “Rashtrapatni” remark, Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury on Thursday said that he can’t even think of insulting President Droupadi Murmu and he will personally meet her and apologise.
He also questioned why Congress Interim President is being dragged into this.
“I can’t even think of insulting the President. It was just a mistake. If the President felt bad, I will personally meet her and apologise. They can hang me if they want. I am ready to get punished but why is she (Sonia Gandhi) being dragged in this?” Chowdhury told ANI.
Further, he has put out a video in his defence on Twitter and accused the BJP of making too much out of a slip.
“India’s President, whoever it is, a Brahmin or tribal a Rashtrapati is a Rashtrapati. It is a post of great honour and prestige. Yesterday, when reporters asked me during a protest at Vijay Chock where we are headed, I said – We are going to the Rashtrapati’s house, to meet with the Rashtrapati. Suddenly, once, Rashtrapatni slipped out of my mouth. That is because in the past few days, there has been so much discussion over Rashtrapati and Rashtrapatni. Suddenly, just one time, only once, it came out by default,” he said.
The Congress MP further said after making the comment, he requested the media not to use it, but they broadcasted the clip.
“Yesterday I had a press meet on behalf of the party and at that time a reporter asked me you said Rashtrapatni. I told him it was a slip of tongue and I asked him not to show but he broadcasted,” Chowdhury said.
He further said that BJP is deliberately blowing up the issue out of proportion. They are making a mountain out of a molehill.
“Now there is ruckus. Over a slip of one word. It is very surprising. The BJP has nothing to say against us, so they find some issue to drag us. They are blowing up the issue out of proportion. They are making a mountain out of a molehill,” Chowdhury said.
The BJP has demanded an apology from Congress president Sonia Gandhi, accusing her of “sanctioning” such remarks by her male party leader.
In Lok Sabha, Union Minister Smriti Irani said the Congress should apologise in Parliament, and on the streets of India, to every citizen of India.
“Sonia Gandhi, you sanctioned the humiliation of Droupadi Murmu. Sonia ji sanctioned the humiliation of a woman in the highest constitutional post. Sonia ji sanctioned the humiliation of a poor woman who ascends to the highest Office in this country. You sanctioned the insult of every Indian citizen. You through your male Congress workers and leaders continue to demean the Office of the President of India. Apologies to the nation. Sonia Gandhi apologies to the tribal, poor and woman of the country,” said Irani in Lok Sabha.
IN Rajya Sabha, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said this was a deliberate, sexist insult to the President of India. (ANI)