- Trouble mounts for Sreesanth as Mumbai cops gather more evidence
- SIT to seek Supreme Court guidance on Maya Kodnani death penalty issue
- Tamil Nadu police bans Yasin Malik-linked pro-Eelam public meeting
- Kings XI Punjab end IPL 2013 campaign with a win
- Narendra Modi: India losing sheen as agricultural nation
The most appalling thing about George Fernandes's appalling comment on the prime minister is that it wasn't even a moment's lapse, a crude answer on the fly while trying to escape TV cameras. Fernandes's remarks came in a press release — we reprint the text in our oped page today — that was two pages long, and was signed by him. That means this veteran politician, many times cabinet minister, convener of the main Opposition group, one of the best known political faces in this country, has a definition of political conduct and courtesy that is so low that his colleagues' shame about his statement should be far greater than his opponents' outrage about it. What are Atal Bihari Vajpayee and L.K. Advani, politicians who never forget the basic rules of political exchange, going to do about Fernandes? Will they ask for his resignation? Will they ask Fernandes to apologise unconditionally?
Indian politics is always a bit raucous, sometimes rude and occasionally offensive. But no one, at least no prominent politician, has ever argued in any fashion and in any context that his opponent can die for his alleged errors of judgment. Fernandes's apologists — can there be any? — would say he was talking about China. They and he should be told we don't care about what the Chinese allegedly do. India is not China. In India you simply cannot even say some of the things they may do in China. If some energetic political opponent of Fernandes uses his press release to press for legal proceedings, on charges of incitement to violence against the PM, it would, frankly, be understandable. If some others remind Fernandes that during his defence ministership the army had to fight the Kargil battle severely under-equipped, and that presiding over such a state of affairs puts a question mark over his effectiveness in defending the nation, that too would be understandable.
- Destitute, orphan students outclass rest in Andhra Class 10 exams
- To re-energise ties, PM wants to visit US, waits for confirmation
- NIA court says no terror link, frees 'Hizbul militant' Liyaqat on bail
- CBI arrests its coal allotments investigator on bribery charge
- ‘Cricketer-bookie Amit may have used Jiju to reach Sree’
- BCCI chief N Srinivasan says police must prove spot-fixing allegations