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Republic Day 2018: Rahul Gandhi watches parade from 6th row, Congress expresses displeasure

By Chennabasaveshwar

Congress party expressed displeasure over seat assigned to Congress President Rahul Gandhi on the occasion of the Republic Day on Friday. Rahul Gandhi watched the parade from the sixth row, sitting next to senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad. Rahul Gandhi' s security stood next to him, appearing to block the view of scores of people sitting in the back.

Congress President Rahul Gandhi watching Republic Day parade from sixth row. Courtesy: @ggiittiikkaa

Congress sees this is an attempt to humiliate Rahul. Former Congress president Sonia Gandhi was always seated in the front row in the last three years and also during Vajpayee regime. Congress on Thursday had accused the BJP of humiliating party president Rahul Gandhi by allotting a seat in the fourth row.

Randeep Surjewala said, " Congress President Rahul Gandhi was deliberately seated by on the occasion of the Republic Day. BJP has bypassed all traditions and gave seat to Rahul Gandhi in 6th row, neither 1st or 4th."

Amit Shah, the president of the ruling BJP, was seen in the front row with senior leader LK Advani.

Senior leader Salman Khurshid said it was "more an issue of good manners than protocols". "It's sad if those in power think somebody's stature is decided by where that person is seated," Khurshid told PTI.

"Rahul Gandhi is not just a Congress MP anymore. He is also the president of India's largest opposition party. And if the ruling party doesn't understand that position, it is unfortunate."

After the parade, Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Rahul Gandhi and former PM Manmohan Singh at 'At home' reception hosted by President Ram Nath Kovind.

(With agency inputs)

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