In round two of their face-off, BSP supremo Mayawati wondered aloud if HRD Minister Smriti Irani would stick to the promise she made two days ago
New Delhi: Smriti Irani and Mayawati had a face-off yet again in Rajya Sabha, with the BSP leader yesterday saying she was not convinced by HRD Minister’s statement with regard to Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula’s alleged suicide, asking whether she would implement her two-day-old statement about “chopping off” her head.
Quoting Smriti Irani’s (left) statement from two days ago, Mayawati (right) asked, “Since we are not convinced by the government’s clarification, will she (Irani) do that (chop off her head).” Pics/PTI
She said that Irani had said in the House two days back that if BSP were not convinced by the clarification of the government, she (Irani) would chop off her head and present it to her. “Since we are not convinced by the government's clarification, will she (Irani) do that,” Mayawati asked.
The issue related to Vemula’s suicide, a Dalit student of Hyderabad University, also led to a clash between Irani and CPI (M) leader Sitaram Yechury. Mayawati, who has been demanding inclusion of a Dalit in the panel probing Vemula’s death, slammed the government for appointing a one-man judicial commission of former Allahabad High Court judge Ashok Kumar Roopanwal.
She added that as per the laws, the government can increase the strength of the commission, and add a Dalit member, but it has not done this so far, which shows its intentions towards the Scheduled Castes.
Cited Durga to explain truth: Irani
Responding to the controversy over her statement on a pamphlet that purported to call for a celebration of ‘Mahishasur Martyrdom Day’, HRD minister Smriti Irani yesterday asserted, “I read it because I was asked to explain what is the truth. I said it with a lot of pain. I myself am a practising Hindu; I myself am a Durga worshipper. These are authenticated documents from the university itself.”