Jaipur: Union Rural Development Minister
Jairam Ramesh kicked up a controversy by wiping his shoe with
a garland of spun cotton given to him as a welcome gesture by
Congress members at a public function in Bikaner district of
Chief Minister Ashok Geholt was also present at the
function at Kolayat area in Bikaner yesterday where they
distributed sanction letters of the first installment of grant
aid under Mukhyamantri Gramin BPL Awas Yojana.
The cotton garlands were offered to Ramesh by Congress
office-bearers Rameshwar Dudi and Rampyari Vishnoi. When the
minister was sitting in a chair at the dais, he took out the
garland and put it on a table. After some time, he took the
garland and cleaned his shoe.
The state BJP reacted sharply and criticised the
minister`s act and demanded apology from him and Gehlot saying
"the garland, a symbol of Gandhi`s spinning wheel. It`s an
insult to Gandhi`s Khadi", BJP state president Arun Chaturvedi
said here today.
"Congress leaders, ministers and the chief ministers
talk about Gandhism and Khadi but they insult it openly. Chief
Minister should also tender an apology from the public," he
When contacted, PCC president Chandrabhan said he was
not aware of the matter. "I am out of station and what has
happened is not in my knowledge," he said.