Subramanian Swamy again makes controversial remarks in RS, Congress protests

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New Delhi, April 28: Subramanian Swamy, who triggered huge protests from Congress yesterday over his attempts to drag Sonia Gandhi in the AgustaWestland helicopter row, today again made some controversial remarks in Rajya Sabha which the Chair immediately expunged and warned him of action for "unnecessarily provoking" members on the other side.

Expunging Swamy's reference to the Constitution of another country that triggered vociferous protests from Congress members, Deputy Chairman P J Kurien also ordered media not to report the remarks.

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Trouble broke out after Chaudhary Munavver Saleem (SP) in a Zero Hour mention referred to Swamy being part of the movement in 1970s to protect the minority status of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU). Swamy got up to clarify saying he had no objection to minority education institutions but the Constitution prohibits the State from financing them.

He was countered on this by the opposition to which he responded by dragging the name of another country, a reference that led to agitated Congress members rushing into the Well. Kurien said he was expunging the reference to the Constitution of another country but that did not satisfy the Congress members who continued to shout slogans against Swamy.

The BJP MP, who took oath only on Monday, insisted that since his name has been taken by another member, he has a right to reply and again went on to refer to the country, drawing sharp rebuke from the Chair. "I will take action against you. Subramanian Swamy you are unnecessarily provoking. I will have to take action against you... you are provoking," Kurien said.

Observing that what Swamy said would not go on record, he said "what has been expunged should not be reported by media." Congress members sought action against Swamy with Jairam Ramesh saying he was "needling and provoking" by bringing in reference to another country.

"This is deliberate." With Congress members continuing to protest, Kurien asked them to return to their seats and said it was a deliberate attempt to subvert the Zero Hour. Asked by the Chair what the problem was when the remarks have been expunged, Leader of the Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad said "the problem is the new gift of BJP.

Problem is not on this side." He said Swamy is just two days old in the House and his remarks have already been expunged twice. "There are 365 days in a year, how many times are you going to expunge his words," he asked the Chair. Azad said Swamy does not know the difference between street language and parliamentary words. "He does not allow his hair to grey so he can learn and mature."

PTI

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