Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti Must be Fired for Hate Speech, Says Opposition: 10 Developments

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Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti Must be Fired for Hate Speech, Says Opposition: 10 Developments
New Delhi:  The opposition demanded in Parliament today that Prime Minster Narendra Modi sack minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, who made a hate speech and used abusive language at a rally in Delhi on Monday. Opposition leaders also protested against the absence of the PM in Parliament. (Watch: After PM's Warning, Apology From Minister For Hate Speech)
Here are 10 developments in this story:
  1. Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, sworn in last month as minister of state, had used an expletive at a public meeting as she said, "People of Delhi have to decide if they want a government of Ramzaadon (followers of Ram) or a government of those who are illegitimate."
  2. She later said her statement was "for those who don't believe in Ram and in unified India." The minister said, "In this country, whether it is Christians or Muslims, all are sons of Ram. Those who don't accept it don't believe in the country."
  3. A howl of protests in Parliament forced Ms Jyoti to apologise in both houses, saying, "It was not my intention to offend anybody. I express regret from my heart and withdraw my words."
  4. Opposition parties said an apology is not enough. They demanded that Mr Modi remove his minister and that criminal charges be framed against her. "We have made it absolutely clear. We cannot accept the situation where the minister lowers the dignity of the government," said the Congress' Anand Sharma.
  5. CPM leader Sitaram Yechury accused Ms Jyoti of breaking the law by "committed offence under Section 153 of the Indian Penal Code which is creating communal divide amongst different groups." He also said, "She has committed an offence...and till an investigation is over, she can't remain a minister. Her apology is an admission of her crime."
  6. In the Rajya Sabha, Mr Yechury sparred with Finance Minister and leader of house Arun Jaitley, who said, "The comments are improper and unacceptable," but also added that the minister had withdrawn her words and the matter must end in the house.
  7. Talking to reporters, Ms Sadhvi said her comments must not be assigned communal overtones. She also emphasised that she had apologised in both Houses of Parliament and asked, "what else can I do?"
  8. Mr Yechury and other opposition leaders have indicated that they will continue to disrupt proceedings over their demand for action against the minister. After repeated adjournments, Rajya Sabha was adjournmed for the day around 2 pm.
  9. Ms Jyoti's apology in Parliament came not long after a sharp warning from PM Modi. "Don't address the nation. There will be no compromise on this," he cautioned party MPs in the morning, without taking names.
  10. The 47-year-old saffron-robed Niranjan Jyoti is the junior minister for food processing. Known for her religious discourses, the Sadhvi is a first-time MP from Uttar Pradesh and among the six BJP MPs drafted into the party's campaign for the Delhi polls due early next year.


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