Bengal minister in dock for remarks against Prez

In a 17-second video clip, the authenticity of which could not be verified independently, Giri was heard commenting on the “looks of the President”.
Droupadi Murmu
Droupadi MurmuFile photo

NANDIGRAM (WB): West Bengal Minister Akhil Giri on Saturday drew widespread criticism for making controversial remarks on President Droupadi Murmu.

After a video clip of his comments went viral, Giri apologised for making such a remark.

In a 17-second video clip, the authenticity of which could not be verified independently, Giri was heard commenting on the “looks of the President”.

“They (BJP) said that I am not good-looking. We don’t judge anyone by their appearance. We respect the office of the President. But how does our President look?” Giri, the minister for Correctional Homes, was heard saying at a rally in a village in Nandigram late on Friday evening.

While talking to reporters this morning, Giri apologised for making such a remark.

“I didn’t mean to disrespect the Honourable President. I was replying to what BJP leaders said while verbally attacking me. Every day I am verbally attacked for my looks. If someone thinks I have disrespected the President, then it is wrong. I apologise for making such a remark. I have immense respect for the President of our country,” he told a news channel.

‘Anti-tribal mindset'; BJP seeks his arrest

KOLKATA: The opposition BJP in West Bengal lashed out at the Trinamool Congress and said Giri’s remark reflected the “anti-tribal” mindset of the TMC. “Akhil Giri made objectionable comments against the country’s President. The comments reflect the anti-tribal mindset of the TMC,” BJP state president Sukanta Majumdar said. Senior BJP leader and MP Saumitra Khan termed the comment “heinous” and demanded the immediate arrest of Giri.

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