New Delhi: Congress president Rahul Gandhi's much-publicised Iftar party held on Wednesday has grabbed headlines not because of the guest-list, but for wrong reasons. The Congress leader has courted a controversy for wearing a skull cap offered to him by a Muslim supporter and immediately removing it in just a few seconds.
The entire incident was caught on camera and the visuals of Rahul Gandhi obliging his Muslim supporter by agreeing to wear the skull cap offered by him and then immediately removing it was widely shared on the social media.
The Gandhi scion was sitting with top Congress leaders including former President Pranab Mukherjee when a Congress supporter from the community came forward and offered him the skull cap. Rahul, with a smile on his face, shook hands with him and wore the skull cap, but removed it within ten seconds.
This was reportedly not well received by the Muslim community members present there.
Latching on to the opportunity to attack Rahul Gandhi, the ruling BJP said that the Congress president's Iftar party was just an eyewash and an attempt to appease Muslims for pure political gains. It also termed it as a photo-op and a publicity stunt.
''Congress hosts Iftar for political engineering, but we want to give dignity to Muslims,'' Union Minister and BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said.
PM Shri @narendramodi Ji‘s Govt has made Muslim women an equal partner of development of the country & has taken several major reformist decisions to protect their social-constitutional & economic rights. #Iftaar pic.twitter.com/wOL1nSuto1
— Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi (@naqvimukhtar) June 13, 2018
Interestingly, this was Rahul Gandhi's first Iftar party since he took over as Congress chief last year.
The Iftar party was attended by the who’s who of Congress and top opposition leaders.
The dinner saw the presence of former presidents Pranab Mukherjee and Pratibha Patil and vice-president Hamid Ansari.
Congress leaders like Randeep Singh Surjewala, Anand Sharma, Ghulam Nabi Azad, and prominent actress Nafisa Ali also attended the get-together at a five-star hotel in New Delhi.
The Congress President took to Twitter later and tweeted, "Good food, friendly faces and great conversation make for a memorable Iftar! We were honoured to have two former Presidents, Pranab Da & Smt Pratibha Patil ji join us, along with leaders from different political parties, the media, diplomats and many old & new friends."
Good food, friendly faces and great conversation make for a memorable Iftar! We were honoured to have two former Presidents, Pranab Da & Smt Pratibha Patil ji join us, along with leaders from different political parties, the media, diplomats and many old & new friends. pic.twitter.com/TM0AfORXQa
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) June 13, 2018
Opposition leaders like DP Tripathy (NCP), Danish Ali (JD(S)), Manoj Jha (RJD), Dinesh Trivedi (TMC), Satish Chandra Mishra (BSP), Kanimozhi (DMK) and Sitaram Yechury (CPI-M) also graced the occasion.
However, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi missed the party owing to her ongoing treatment abroad.
Rahul Gandhi had on Wednesday triggered a controversy by ending his press conference in Mumbai within 2.5 minutes which left the mediapersons in a state of shock as they had waited for hours to meet him.