Karnataka governor stokes controversy as he walks out as national anthem plays

Mar 10, 2015, 23:01 IST | IANS

In an embarrassing gaffe, Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala today walked off the podium when the national anthem was being played at an official function at Raj Bhavan, landing him in controversy

Bengaluru: Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Rudabhai Vala on Tuesday walked out of the durbar hall of Raj Bhavan even as the national anthem was being played during a function.

After administering oath of office to Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan as judge of the Karnataka High Court at a brief ceremony in the durbar hall, Vala was seen walking out while the national anthem was being played instrumentally.

When an aide rushed towards Vala and reminded him that the national anthem was being played to mark the end of the ceremony, the 77-year-old veteran Gujarat leader returned to the dais and stood along with Karnataka High Court Chief Justice D.H. Waghela, Justice Chauhan and state chief secretary Kaushik Mukherjee.

"It was not intentional but happened on the spur of the moment. The governor did not mean any disrespect to the national anthem and he returned to the dais immediately after he was told about it," a state official, who was present at the ceremony, said.

President Pranab Mukherjee recently transferred Justice Chauhan to Karnataka from Rajasthan High Court.

There was no communique from Raj Bhavan or the state government on the governor's momentary lapse.

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