As controversies mount over Mumbai Congress chief Sanjay Nirupam's 'illiterate' remark on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the former Rajya Sabha MP on Thursday came out to clear his stance regarding the same.
Speaking to news agency ANI, Nirupam raised significant questions over the educational qualifications of PM Modi while taking a dig at the Delhi University for not making his degrees public.
"If children ask about educational qualification of the PM, what will you tell them? People don't know his qualification. What are the forces which pressurise Delhi University not to release his degree, even when it's claimed he studied there," the Congress leader was quoted as saying by ANI.
Describing his statement as an outcome of democratic right Nirupam further said that PM is not God in a democracy and hence speaking of him while maintaining decorum is not wrong. "The words I used aren't undignified," Nirupam added.
It's a democracy&PM isn't God in a democracy,people speak of him while maintaining decorum. The words I used aren't undignified: S Nirupam on his remark 'Jo bachhe school, college mein padh rahe hain Modi jaise unpadh-gawaar ke baare mein jaan kar unko kya milne wala hai?' (12.9) pic.twitter.com/1Umvb4ypgh— ANI (@ANI) September 13, 2018
On Wednesday, the Congress leader gave birth to a fresh controversy after he called Prime Minister Narendra Modi an “unpadh-gawaar” (illiterate).
"What those school-going children will gain who are learning about an illiterate like Modi? It is a very shameful thing that the country’s citizens and children still do not know how many degrees the PM has," Nirupam told ANI.
Nirupam's reactions came on the heels of Maharashtra government's decision to screen a short film on PM Modi, Chalo Jeet Hain, at schools. Opposition Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) have also slammed the BJP-led dispensation over the decision.
Meanwhile, Nirupam's comments drew sharp reactions from BJP leaders with the party's Maharashtra unit spokesperson Shaina NC calling him "mentally deranged."
"Yet another obnoxious comment by a mentally deranged @sanjaynirupam. Maybe he forgets that @narendramodi is elected by 125 cr Indians who aren't "unpad or gavar".@INCIndia is devoid of ideology and relevant questions. Sure citizens will give a befitting reply in 2019 (sic)," Shaina wrote.
Anil Shirole, a BJP MP from Maharashtra tweeted, "PM is not a representative of one party, he is the Prime Minister of the Country and it's people. @sanjaynirupam by insulting our PM you have insulted and disrespected the office, the country and the constitution drafted by Dr.Babasaheb Ambedkar ji (sic)".
The 32-minute film Chalo Jeete Hai, directed by Mangesh Hadawale and presented by Aanand L Rai and Mahaveer Jain, is based on the early life of Modi.