SP leader links Hindu gods, alcohol

SP leader links Hindu gods, alcohol

Agarwal quoted a verse he said he once read somewhere in 1991 that juxtaposed alcohol and Hindu gods, a remark the BJP said hurt the sentiments of the community. The SP leader insisted that he did not intend to hurt the sentiments of anyone.

The Rajya Sabha members attacked Agarwal for linking Hindu gods with alcohol brands and demanded an apology from him. He said the names of some Hindu deities linked to some types of alcohol were written on the wall of the school. Another SP member Neeraj Shekhar said "this was enough" and started moving aggressively towards the Well of the House, but he was soon brought back to resume his seat after intervention from two members from the Opposition benches.

Congress leader Anand Sharma and TMC leader Derek O'Brien too said it should be ensured that these comments do not surface on the social media and passions are not inflamed. But Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar objected saying, "Agarwal has not insulted a single person". Observing the situation, Deputy chairman PJ Kurien stated that Agarwal should not have said what he said and emphasised that whatever Agarwal remarked was "per se derogatory".

Agarwal later said if his remarks had hurt the sentiment of anyone he was withdrawing them. He ordered that the statement should be expunged from the records of the House. But the BJP members refused to budge and continued slogan shouting.

As MLAs in Tamil Nadu got a raise of Rs. 50,000 in their salary members of parliament also raised the demand of a pay hike on Wednesday on a day when the house also discussed farmer distress later. The ruckus continued even after the House reconvened. Ram Gopal Verma pointed out referring to an incident that a Union Minister had made a remark about a Hindu goddess during a debate on the agitation in Jawaharlal Nehru University but he was not asked for an apology then why should Naresh apologise for making any statement like this?