"The Minister concerned has apologised. She is a first-time member and comes from a rural background," the PM said in the Lok Sabha or Lower House, where his government is in a majority. He thanked the opposition for allowing the Lok Sabha to function and said "we should move ahead with our work."
But an unyielding opposition did not allow the Rajya Sabha, where the government is in a minority, to function for the fifth straight day and have issued a joint statement seeking a resolution in Parliament to condemn the minister's remarks.
The government has said an emphatic no. "There is no question of any resolution condemning her," said Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu outside Parliament today.
Government sources said floor managers of the opposition parties had agreed, in the presence of the Rajya Sabha Chairman and Deputy Chairman that work would resume after the Prime Minister made a statement in both Houses. PM Modi spoke in the Rajya Sabha yesterday and, after a protest by the Congress, in the Lok Sabha today.
Opposition parties, including the Congress led by Vice President Rahul Gandhi, protested near a Mahatma Gandhi statue in the Parliament complex this morning against the government's refusal to sack Ms Jyoti, who had made a hate speech in Delhi on Sunday.
The government has made it clear this week that the minister, a first-time parliamentarian from Uttar Pradesh, will not be fired. Mr Naidu said today that she will also continue to campaign in Delhi. Two of her public appearances have been cancelled since her speech on the weekend.