PM Modi gives ‘cold shoulder’ to opposition leaders at Parliament attack anniv event | india news | Hindustan Times
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PM Modi gives ‘cold shoulder’ to opposition leaders at Parliament attack anniv event

Narendra Modi ‘ignores’ political rivals at ceremony held in honour of personnel who died in the Parliament attack

india Updated: Dec 13, 2017 23:50 IST
Saubhadra Chatterji
Saubhadra Chatterji
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Congress president-elect Rahul Gandhi greets BJP veteran LK Advani ahead of a memorial ceremony for martyrs of the 2001 Parliament attack in New Delhi on Wednesday.
Congress president-elect Rahul Gandhi greets BJP veteran LK Advani ahead of a memorial ceremony for martyrs of the 2001 Parliament attack in New Delhi on Wednesday.(Sushil Kumar/HT photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi ‘avoided interaction’ with Opposition leaders at the Parliament, where politicians from across party lines had gathered on Wednesday to pay homage to the security personnel who had died in the 2001 terrorist attack on the House.

Eyewitnesses said the PM did not interact with Opposition leaders and walked away towards his designated spot to wait for the vice-president’s arrival.

The PM, however, did shake hands with his predecessor Manmohan Singh, who had earlier this week sought an apology from the BJP leader for accusing the Congress of conspiring with Pakistan for a win in Gujarat elections. Singh greeted Modi with a ‘namaste’ just before the ceremony, to which the PM responded by shaking his hand.

Read | Caption this: Modi, Manmohan have awkward meeting after Gujarat war of words

Many Opposition leaders attributed the PM’s “cold” body language to the ongoing Gujarat polls, in the run-up to which both the sides had launched scathing attacks on each other.

Government sources, however, pointed out that the PM always goes to Opposition leaders on the first day of the Parliament session to greet them irrespective of their political differences.

Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, party’s president-elect Rahul Gandhi, leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad, and Trinamool Congress’ Derek O’Brien were among the Opposition leaders present at the memorial ceremony.

While Modi maintained distance from his political rivals, other BJP leaders congratulated Rahul for getting elected as the Congress chief.

“Senior ministers like Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley, Rajnath Singh and Ravi Shankar Prasad congratulated him for getting elected as the Congress’ President,” an Opposition leader said.