"How does our President look...": TMC Minister makes objectionable remarks against President Murmu; apologises later

BJP has condemned the statement of the Bengal minister and called Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her party "anti-tribal".

Aritra SinghaUpdated: Saturday, November 12, 2022, 11:15 PM IST
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West Bengal Minister and TMC leader Akhil Giri on Friday made objectionable remarks against President Draupadi Murmu. | Twitter/ Amit Malviya

Kolkata: Trinamool Congress minister Akhil Giri drew widespread criticism including from his own party after he commented on the 'looks' of President Droupadi Murmu. 

Addressing a rally at Nandigram on Friday late evening, the minister of state for Correctional Homes while slamming the BJP also commented about the ‘looks’ of the President.

Repenting for his comment later Giri said, “For last few months Suvendu Adhikari had criticised my looks. I didn’t want to say anything about the President but due to the anger against Adhikari it was my slip of tongue. I still respect the post of the President personally and also respect the President,” said Giri.

In the viral Video, Giri was heard commenting on the 'President's looks.'

"He ( Suvendu Adhikari) says I am not good-looking. How beautiful you are! We don't judge anyone by their appearance, we respect the office of the President (of India). But how does our President look?"  the TMC leader said while hitting out at  Suvendu Adhikari in a public rally in Nandigram.

Giri was taking on West Bengal Opposition leader Adhikari following an incident of unrest in the BJP leader's Nandigram constituency over the Martyrs' Day event.

"He (Suvendu) calls me half-pant minister. If I am half a pant minister, then what was your father? Underwear minister? I don't have any minister above me in my department. But your father had. What does a person wear under half-pants? (laugh) Then your father is a negti minister (underwear minister). He tells girls "don't touch my body". What will happen if girls touch your body? Suvendu is waiting for the police to arrest him. He asks the police to arrest him. Then he tells women police officers 'don't touch my body'," said the West Bengal Minister.

The President hails from the Tribal community. She is the first tribal President of India and the country's second female President.

The BJP has condemned the statement of the Bengal minister and called Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her party "anti-tribal".

BJP condems the statement

"President Droupadi Murmu, hails from the Tribal community. Akhil Giri, TMC Minister of Correctional Homes made objectionable comments about her in the presence of Shashi Panja, another minister from the women's welfare department Mamata Banerjee and TMC are anti-tribal," the BJP Bengal unit tweeted while sharing a video of Giri.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) IT department in-charge Amit Malviya also hit back at the TMC Minister and termed his remark a "shameful level of discourse".

"Akhil Giri, minister in Mamata Banerjee's cabinet, insults the President, says, "We don't care about looks. But how does your President look?" Mamata Banerjee has always been anti-Tribals, didn't support President Murmu for the office and now this. Shameful level of discourse...," Malviya tweeted.

Previous objectionable remarks against the President

This is not for the first time that the Opposition leader had made an objectionable remark against the President.

Back in July, Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury had called President Murmu 'Rashtrapatni', which had created a political row. Another congress leader Udit Raj too invited trouble as he accused President Murmu of allegedly doing 'chamchagiri' while making controversial remarks about her back in October. Congress's Udit Raj too invited trouble as he accused the President of 'sycophancy'.

However, both leaders later apologized for their remarks.

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