New Delhi: Apparently in a spot of bother over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's effusive praise of his speech at Oxford University, Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Thursday night sought to downplay it and said his party's demands on the resignation of BJP ministers remain.
"Absolutely gracious of @narendramodi ji but yes, @INCIndia's demands remain: Standards of integrity must be upheld," Tharoor tweeted, as Modi's praise of him, a day after he got an earful from his party chief Sonia Gandhi, left political tongues wagging on the timing of the appreciation.
— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) July 23, 2015
Tharoor's party colleague Sachin Pilot said it was very kind of Modi to praise Tharoor but there is no let up in the demand for resignations of Union Minister Sushma Swaraj and Chief Ministers of Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh--Vasundhara Raje and Shivraj Singh Chauhan for alleged irregularities.
"Very kind of @narendramodi Ji to praise @ShashiTharoor in Parliament but let's move on to real issues now. We still call for resignations!," Pilot tweeted.
Tharoor later said he hoped that no one should read anything else into Modi's praise beyond the prime minister's act of showing graciousness.
Tharoor said politicians can respect each other across party lines but that does not mean they have to abandon values of their parties.
Modi showered praise on Tharoor, the only Congress MP present at a function organised by the Lok Sabha Speaker for MPs, while talking about the need for free airing of views on national issues irrespective of the party affiliations.
"Oxford debate has a huge significance. It is good that Shashi ji was there.... What he spoke there reflected the sentiments of the citizens of India," he said while inaugurating a workshop on the Speaker's Research Initiative (SRI) to train MPs on various subjects of global importance.