New Delhi, July 21: Who does not love a good hug? We all do, especially when the hug is from a loved one. But who could have thought that a hug would steal the thunder from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's usual no-holds-barred speech against his opponents.
On Friday, something very interesting happened in Parliament during the no-confidence motion debate against the Modi government. After slamming the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in a speech dubbed by many as sharp and fierce, Congress president Rahul Gandhi did something unimaginable.
He went ahead and hugged PM Modi. After the hug, as Rahul went back to his seat he winked and everything was captured on camera.
Rahul's jappi (hug) to an awkward Modi got mixed reactions. While his supporters and others called the gesture a welcome change in Indian politics where rivals are only good at attacking each other, Rahul's critics and the BJP, including the PM, slammed him for lowering the decorum of the House.
Are politicians not allowed to embrace each other inside Parliament? No rules suggest so, but a rattled BJP cried foul over a hug calling it "childish". But the nation keenly observing every minute details of Friday's 12-hour-long debate on no-confidence motion did not mind the hug. After all, it was the picture of the hug that became the talking point of the entire trust vote.
While the opposition parties badly lost the no-confidence motion as 325 parliamentarians voted against it and only 126 voted in favour of it, it was Rahul's Gandigiri (a term associated with the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi like love and peace and made famous by Bollywood film Munna Bhai M.B.B.S) which was the actual winner.
On Saturday, all newspapers put up the hug picture on its front page.
The Rahul-Modi hug in Parliament makes it to front pages of newspapers. pic.twitter.com/My3n7Ge4gU— ANI (@ANI) July 21, 2018
A twitter user pointed out the fact that a Kannada daily used the English word hug in its headline.
The Congress maintains that the hug was spontaneous but many raised doubts that it was pre-scripted so that Rahul could score some brownie points.
Looking at the number of jokes and memes on Twitter over the hug, it is sure the whole nation is currently gripped by Rahul's embrace, whether or not you like PDA (Public Display of Affection).