The Congress wasted a day of the already shortest winter session by sloganeering for an apology from PM Narendra Modi for the “baseless allegations” against former PM Manmohan Singh.
Since the Parliament’s Winter session convened on December 15, both houses have been stalled with the opposition demanding an apology and clarification from the PM Modi for Dr. Manmohan Singh.
The government made it clear that PM Narendra Modi will not apologize to former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for his comments during the campaign for the Gujarat Assembly elections, where he accused him of colluding with Pakistani officials to influence the Gujarat elections.
How the meeting went ahead?
During a meeting of the Opposition leaders, the government conveyed its decision. The meeting was attended by with Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar.
Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu asked both sides to talk and resolve the issue. However, the government has assured, that either Mr. Jaitley or Ananth Kumar will make a statement.
Congress members later staged a walkout in Lok Sabha after Speaker Sumitra Mahajan refused to allow them to raise the issue. While turning down the opposition’s demand for a discussion, Ms. Mahajan said, “The elections are over, and the results are out. I cannot allow you to raise the issue here.”
Before the Congress staged a walkout, Mallikarjuna Kharge, Congress’ leader in the House continued to read a written note from his seat despite being disallowed by the Speaker. He tells reporters, “The Prime Minister had attempted to insult Manmohan Singh. We want that he should come to Parliament and apologize or give an explanation for making such an allegation.”
“If he (Modi) has evidence then he should have registered an FIR and arrested him. He has also raised questions on Manmohan Singh’s patriotism,” he further added.
“The Prime Minister’s stature will not be diminished if he clarifies and regrets. Either he should prove it that there is something wrong or take his words back,” said Anand Sharma, Deputy Leader of the Congress in the Rajya Sabha.
Dr. Manmohan Singh also met Mr. Naidu In the Rajya Sabha, to express anguish over Mr. Modi’s remarks.
On December 11, while addressing a rally in Gujarat PM Modi said “The same Mani Shankar Aiyar, who insulted Gujarat, held secret meetings with Pakistan High Commissioner. What was the reason? Why are people who previously held high posts in the military-intelligence establishment of Pak writing that we should help make Ahmed Patel the CM?”
He further suggested that Pakistan was trying to influence the outcome of the assembly polls in the state. He claimed that some Manmohan Singh and Pakistani officials met at Aiyar’s house over dinner on December 6. The dinner was attended by Pakistan’s former foreign affairs minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri, former Indian Army chief Deepak Kapoor, former foreign minister K Natwar Singh, and former diplomats Salman Haidar, TCA Raghavan, among others, an Indian Express report found.
At least five of those present in the meeting told Express that it had nothing to do with domestic politics. Later Manmohan Singh asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to apologize to the nation for alleging that he was conspiring with Pakistan for BJP’s defeat in the Gujarat polls.
Rejecting the charges Singh said he was deeply pained by the prime minister’s statement. Singh then issued a statement, listing those who attended the dinner and assured that during the meeting the election was not discussed. “I reject the innuendos and falsehoods as I did not discuss Gujarat elections with anyone else at the dinner hosted by Mani Shankar Aiyar as alleged by Modi.
“I sincerely hope that he will apologize to the Nation for his ill-thought transgression to restore the dignity of the office he occupies,” Singh said in the statement.
Please Don’t Lecture On Nationalism, Says Former PM Manmohan Singh to PM Narendra Modi