Cong leader slams party’s distasteful dig at FM Sitharaman, says ‘it needs to stop’

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New Delhi, April 13 (IANS) Congress leader Praveen Chakravarty on Saturday took exception to the party’s swipe at Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, based on remarks of her estranged husband, wherein the latter accused the Modi government of fanning anarchy and hatemongering in the country.

The Congress shared an interview of Parakala Prabhakar on its X handle, dated April 7, showing his tirade against the Modi dispensation while adding that he is the husband of Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. A leading publication from South reported, citing Prabhakar’s remarks, that the elections will “cease to happen” in the country if the Modi government bags a third term.

“Political economist and husband of Union FM Nirmala Sitharaman, Parakala Prabhakar said if the BJP wins the upcoming Lok Sabha polls and PM Narendra Modi is re-elected again in 2024, then there will never be elections in the country again,” wrote The Hindu newspaper on X, while sharing the news.

The news report created a storm on social media and elicited many reactions. Many termed it a “blatant attempt to sensationalise” the matter and a “mischievous” bid to sully the image of the Finance Minister. Some termed it a “real blow for the media” while others slammed the Congress spokespersons for trolling the Finance Minister over her separated husband’s personal observations.

Chakravarty, also the Head of Data Analytics department and Chairman of All India Professionals’ Congress (AIPC), slammed the report and said that such attempts to denigrate Finance Minister must be avoided despite political differences.

“Political and ideological differences aside, I agree that this constant dig at FM Sitharaman using her (estranged) husband is in bad taste and needs to stop,” the Congress leader wrote.

Even the news publication’s former bosses didn’t concur with such “falling standards of reporting”.

Malini Parthasarathy, former chairperson of The Hindu Group, called it a “real low blow for media” and also called out misogynist haters for distasteful comments.

“It’s real low blow for media and Opposition party spokespersons to troll the Union Finance Minister, every time Parakala Prabhakar makes his own observations. It’s a sheer malice and deliberate baiting of Ms Sitharaman by misogynists who can’t understand that women can be successful and lead their own lives,” wrote Malini Parthasarathy.

“It’s known that Nirmala Sitharaman and Parakala Prabhakar lead separate lives. This baiting of Ms Sitharaman for remarks unconnected to her is unfair and has got to stop,” she added.

Parakal Prabhakar is a noted economist and social commentator. He also had brief stints in politics. He was the official spokesperson of BJP in early 2000s and later joined Praja Rajyam Party and then quit it in 2009 over disagreements with the party’s functioning.



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