Bengaluru, July 6: Kolkata-based newspaper The Telegraph, which had taken on Union minister Smriti Irani during her stint as the HRD Minister which ended on Tuesday (July 5) when Prime Minister Narendra Modi effected a Cabinet reshuffle, came up with yet another Page 1 headline on the leader after she was shifted to the textile ministry. [Prakash Javadekar replaces Smriti as new HRD minister]
"Through her over two-year tenure in the HRD ministry, Smriti courted controversies galore, beginning with Modi sympathiser and activist Madhu Kishwar contesting her credentials to oversee education without holding a graduate degree to Smriti's attempts to answer Madhu with half-baked facts, her ham-handed handling of combustible campus disputes and contentious appointments in high places done allegedly under the RSS's pressure," the article said. [Washington Post calls Smriti Irani "India's most controversial minister"]
The former HRD minister caught the headlines in the wake of the death of Dalit doctoral student Rohith Vemula in Hyderabad and the agitation in Jawaharlal Nehru University over "anti-national" sloganeering and the subsequent arrest of student leader Kanhaiya Kumar. The daily had taken on Irani, calling her "Aunty National". The epiosde had seen a widespread repercussion on social media.
Irani's historionic defence in Parliament later on the issues also earned her much flak from the Opposition and the media.
"As long as she was confined to nursing it as a Lok Sabha constituency, it was tolerated. The moment she began fancying herself as an Uttar Pradesh ' neta', the leadership's antenna was raised," the Telegraph article also quoted a BJP source as saying over Irani's transfer.