PM Modi fires salvos at opposition leaders, dubs Rahul Gandhi as tubelight

PTI New Delhi, India Feb 06, 2020, 03.58 PM(IST)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his Motion of Thanks on the President's Address in Lok Sabha. Photograph:( ANI )

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When Rahul Gandhi got up from his seat and questioned Modi on the issue of unemployment, Modi said he was waiting for the Congress leader's reaction but it took him 30-40 minutes.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday took repeated digs at opposition leaders, including Rahul Gandhi of the Congress whom he dubbed as "tubelight" saying that it took him 30-40 minutes to respond to his speech in Lok Sabha.

Without naming Rahul Gandhi, Modi in his reply to the discussion on the presidential address referred to the Congress leader's comments he had reportedly made about "youth beating Modi with sticks over the lack of jobs", and said he would increase the number of Surya Namaskars (a yoga exercise) so that his back can bear the sticks.

"In 70 years, no Congress leader has ever become self- sufficient. I heard one leader's manifesto yesterday. He said 'we will beat Modi with a stick in six months'. I can imagine that it is a difficult prospect, so it will take six months to prepare.

"In these six months, I will do more surya namaskar so that my back is ready for the beating...I have been subjected to abuses in the past 20 years, I will make myself gaali-proof (abuse-proof) and also danda-proof (stick-proof)," Modi said.

When Rahul Gandhi got up from his seat and questioned Modi on the issue of unemployment, Modi said he was waiting for the Congress leader's reaction but it took him 30-40 minutes.

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"I have been speaking for 30-40 minutes but it took this long for the current to reach. Many tubelights are like this," Modi said prompting ruling NDA members to burst into laugh.

Modi, who was in a witty mood, took several digs at Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury for frequently rising from his seat and interrupting him, saying that he is publicising 'Fit India' campaign of his government in Parliament.

Responding to Chowdhury on the issue unemployment, Modi said he will resolve unemployment in the country but not his and of his party's.

As soon as Prime Minister Modi entered the Lok Sabha premises he was welcomed by the BJP members by raising slogans of 'Jai Shri Ram' to which Congress responded by 'Mahatma Gandhi Zindabad' and 'Mahatma Gandhi Amar Rahe'.

Responding to Congress leader Shashi Tharoor's criticism of the government, Modi suggested that Tharoor should have some soft corner for Kashmir, after all he was "son-in-law" of the region, referring to his late wife Sunanda Pushkar.