Bharatiya Janata Party President Nitin Gadkari on Thursday expressed regret over his remark that Samajwadi Party (SP) president Mulayam Singh Yadav and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad were like dogs licking Sonia Gandhi’s and the Congress’s feet. But the two leaders were in no mood to forgive him.
“I respect both these leaders and take my words back. I had just used it (simile) as a phrase to explain things,” Gadkari told mediapersons in Chandigarh a day after his slur.
Gadkari had on Wednesday used the derogatory expression against Prasad and Yadav for not backing last month’s Opposition-sponsored cut motions in the Lok Sabha.
“Bade dakarte the sher jaise, aur kutte ke jaise ban kar Soniaji aur Congress ke aage talve chatne lage (They roared like lions, but then got down to licking the feet of Sonia Gandhi and the Congress like dogs),” Gadkari had said at the rally.
The SP said it would take legal action against Gadkari. “We are seeking legal opinion on the issue and will go to court against him,” the SP spokesperson Mohan Singh told reporters in New Delhi.
Singh said Gadkari’s comments reflected the deep-rooted bias that the RSS and BJP had against people of lower castes. In Lucknow, however, the party’s Uttar Pradesh president and Yadav’s son, Akhilesh sang a different tune. “Why keep flogging a dead horse? It is a closed chapter now that Gadkari has apologised,” he said.
Lalu Prasad, however, refused to accept Gadkari’s apology and hit back at him. He said in Patna that Gadkari was a political novice suffering from mental bankruptcy.
“I have the right medicines to cure them (BJP) of their chronic disease of defaming others. First, I will give them a tablet, then a capsule and then an injection, if required,” he said. He also dubbed the BJP president’s remarks as unparliamentary and undignified.
The RJD chief also berated the BJP, calling it a party that only believed in indulging in dirty tricks to nail political rivals. “How could the BJP ever think we would be on their side?” he asked.