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Monday, Dec 16, 2019

‘PM Modi doesn’t need script’: BJP’s comeback to Manmohan Singh on swipe at Modi

Former prime minister Manmohan Singh had made the statement at the launch of his book Changing India, a compilation of his speeches and papers in six volumes on Tuesday in New Delhi.

india Updated: Dec 19, 2018 20:45 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said PM Modi doesn’t need prompter, script or a director.
BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said PM Modi doesn’t need prompter, script or a director.(ANI Photo)
         

Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, ridiculed for his silence by his political opponents for years, had taken an unusual dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the release of his book, Changing India, on Tuesday. Dr Manmohan Singh said he wasn’t “the PM who was afraid of talking to the Press”. The day after, Union minister for minority affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi hit back at the ex-PM.

“He is a senior leader and a former PM. When he was PM he used to talk on someone’s order and script, even now he is doing the same. He should realise that PM Modi doesn’t need prompter, script or a director,” Naqvi said on Manmohan Singh’s statement.

Former prime minister Manmohan Singh had made the statement at the launch of his book Changing India, a compilation of his speeches and papers in six volumes on Tuesday in New Delhi.

“People say I was a silent Prime Minister. I think these (six) volumes (of his book) speak for themselves. I wasn’t the PM who was afraid of talking to the press. I met press regularly and on every foreign trip I undertook, I had a press conference on board or immediately on return,” he had said.

Watch: PM Modi doesn’t need script’: BJP’s comeback to Manmohan Singh on swipe at Modi

Manmohan Singh’s statement was an obvious dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi who is yet to host a press conference since taking charge.

However, this was not the first time that the former PM has taken a swipe at PM Modi. In November, at the book launch of Congress leader Manish Tewari, he had said, “My advice to the prime minister is that he should exercise due restraint becoming of the office of the Prime Minister.”

Earlier this month, immediately after the campaigning for the assembly elections in five states had come to an end on December 5, Congress president Rahul Gandhi too had criticised PM Modi for never addressing a press conference in his tenure and had said that he should try addressing reporters as it was fun to be asked questions.

Rahul Gandhi had also tweeted “Btw its been 1,654 days since u became PM. Still no press conference (sic)?”.