New Delhi: Less than a day after Congress suspended senior party leader Mani Shankar Aiyar and issued him a show-cause notice for his 'neech' remark against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a poster congratulating party Vice-President Rahul Gandhi for the decision has gone viral on social media.
Reportedly issued by Hasib Ahmed, a Congress leader from Allahabad, the poster shows a photo of a batsman with Rahul Gandhi's face morphed on it. He is seen whacking a ball which has Aiyar's face has been incorporated. "Well done Rahul bhaiya," is the accompanying sentence on the poster - in bold font and colours.
The poster is being widely shared on WhatsApp groups as well as on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. While some are indeed congratulating Congress party for suspending one of its own, there are many who are seeing the poster as a sign of how quickly the party can disown its own member.
And Aiyar is not just any member.
A party loyalist, Aiyar is a former Union Minister who fell out of favour on Thursday when he accused the word 'neech' while describing what he claimed are PM Modi's dirty tactics in politics. "Mujhko lagta hai ki ye aadmi bahut neech kisam ka aadmi hai, isme koi sabhyata nahi hai, or aise mauke par is kisam ki gandi rajniti karne ki kya avashyakta hai?" he was quoted as saying by news agency ANI. After massive uproar, and being targeted for his comment by PM Modi himself at an election rally in Gujarat, Aiyar clarified that he may have misspoken since Hindi was not his mother tongue.
Nonetheless, Rahul Gandhi distanced himself from the remark and said Aiyar must apologise. Later on Thursday evening, the party suspended Aiyar - a move which has clearly impressed some like Hasib Ahmed who is known for featuring in 'hyper' posters. Last year, local media reports had highlighted how he had featured in a poster which purportedly depicted Rahul Gandhi as "Arjun avataar" and "Yug Purush".