Government Upset at BJP Leader Ram Madhav's Tweets on Vice-President: Sources

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Government Upset at BJP Leader Ram Madhav's Tweets on Vice-President: Sources

Prime Minister Narendra Modi participating in the Yoga Day event at Rajpath on Sunday

New Delhi:  The government is reportedly upset with BJP leader Ram Madhav for questioning Vice President Hamid Ansari's absence at a massive Yoga Day event in Delhi on Sunday where Prime Minister Narendra Modi performed asanas along with nearly 36,000 people.
Here are 10 developments in the story:
  1. Sources close to the Vice President say he would have attended the event, had he been invited. "Mr Ansari practises yoga regularly and did yoga at his residence yesterday. He can be invited by the ministry concerned, this time he wasn't," said a source.
  2. The government has cited protocol in its defence, saying the Vice President can't be invited to an event where the Prime Minister is chief guest.
  3. "When the Prime Minister is chief guest, it is not appropriate to invite the Vice President, a higher constitutional authority," union minister Shripad Naik told NDTV.
  4. Government sources are upset at what they call a "needless controversy" spurred by BJP leader Ram Madhav's tweets. Sources have asked why a senior BJP leader questioned the Vice President's absence when he wasn't invited.
  5. Ram Madhav, a BJP leader on deputation from the party's ideological mentor Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), had tweeted last evening taking a jibe at Mr Ansari's absence at the yoga event. The BJP general secretary later deleted the tweet and apologized, saying he had learnt that Mr Ansari was unwell, but the damage had been done.
  6. "Unknowingly something happens, we apologise for that. It should have been avoided," minister Shripad Naik said on the tweet and its fallout.
  7. On record, the Vice President's office told NDTV: "If the government says Hamid Ansari was not invited because of protocol since the PM was leading the event, the matter is closed."
  8. Opposition parties have reacted sharply to the controversy. "It shows the mindset of the RSS because Ram Madhav is a representative of the RSS in the BJP. They are trying to politicise yoga. For their divisive politics they are trying to denegrate the prestige of the office of the vice president," said Congress leader Shakeel Ahmad.
  9. "I am surprised how the vice president could be excluded - is it because he is Muslim? The government and the PM must answer how a vice president was not invited. It is a serious omission," said Majid Memon, a leader of the Nationalist Congress Party.
  10. In his tweets, Ram Madhav had also accused Rajya Sabha TV, the state-run broadcaster, of blacking out the live telecast of the Yoga Day event. As Rajya Sabha Chairman, Mr Ansari heads the channel. Rajya Sabha TV has denied the charge.




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