Tribune News Service
New Delhi, December 11
The Congress on Wednesday raised the issue of “lotus symbol” apparently being printed on new passports brought for distribution in Kerala in the Lok Sabha during the Zero Hour. Raising this issue Kozikode MK Raghavan quoted media reports to stress his point, calling it “further saffronisation” of government establishment.
Notably, lotus is the symbol of the ruling BJP.
“I urge the government to withdraw these booklets and initiate an inquiry into this,” he said.
Meanwhile, Leader of the Congress Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury demanded a reply on the issue from External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar who was sitting in the House. Though he found support from other Opposition parties, his attempt to “hijack” the Zero Hour found resistance from the BJD.
As Chowdhury persisted with his demand for reply from the minister, BJD member B Mehtab retaliated saying the Congress could not hijack the House. His party colleagues joined saying: “You can only plead and you cannot force.”
Speaker Om Birla told Chowdhury that as a senior member of the House he should be aware that the minister cannot reply without prior notice.
Quoting the media report, Raghavan claimed lotus is printed inside a rectangle on the page where passport officers’ signature and seal are seen. N K Premachandran of RSP was also seen flashing the paper carrying the report amid the war of words between the Congress and the BJD.
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