PM’s fit­ness video talk­ing point at Rahul’s Iftar


RAHUL Gandhi’s first iftar as Congress pres­i­dent on Tues­day saw for­mer pres­i­dents Pranab Mukher­jee and Prat­i­bha Patil, exvice pres­i­dent Hamid An­sari, as well as a host of op­po­si­tion and Congress lead­ers in at­ten­dance. UPA chair­per­son So­nia Gandhi, who is cur­rently abroad, missed the event.

Prime Min­is­ter Modi’s fit­ness video that went vi­ral on so­cial me­dia ear­lier on Wed­nes­day, was the cen­tre of the con­ver­sa­tion. Ask­ing peo­ple for the re­ac­tion on the video, Gandhi said, “Did you see the PM’s fit­ness video? It is ridicu­lous... I mean... It is bizarre... This is bankruptcy.” He then asked CPI-M gen­eral sec­re­tary Si­taram Yechury to put out his fit­ness video to match the prime min­is­ter’s. TMC leader Di­nesh Trivedi, BSP leader Satish Chan­dra Misra and DMK’s Kan­i­mozhi, Lok­tantrik Janata Dal leader Sharad Ya­dav and RJD’s Manoj Jha had a hearty laugh over this.

The Congress party hasn’t hosted an iftar, the cus­tom­ary break­ing of the day-long fast in the holy month of Ramzan, dur­ing the past two years. So­nia Gandhi had hosted its last iftar in 2015. The party’s de­ci­sion to re­sume the iftar came days af­ter Pres­i­dent Ram Nath Kovind de­cided to dis­con­tinue the feast tra­di­tion­ally held at Rash­tra­p­ati Bha­van. The re­sump­tion also came amid charges of Congress pur­su­ing soft Hin­dutva dur­ing the re­cent by­polls when Rahul was seen mak­ing rounds of tem­ples. How­ever, Union mi­nor­ity af­fairs min­is­ter Mukhtar Ab­bas Naqvi played the spoiler in Rahul’s iftar mo­ment with the an­nounce­ment of his own par­al­lel feast.

Naqvi’s iftar on Wed­nes­day was at­tended by NDA min­is­ters Ravi Shankar Prasad, Prakash Javadekar, Sm­riti Irani, Ji­ten­dra Singh and MJ Ak­bar as well as 300 Mus­lim women, in­clud­ing a few who were given triple ta­laq.

Com­par­ing his feast to one by the Congress, Naqvi said: “We talk about devel­op­ment and dig­nity. The Congress’ iftar is for po­lit­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing. No one has ever tried to or­gan­ise an iftar for so­cial en­gi­neer­ing. We have done it, es­pe­cially when we are talk­ing about Mus­lim women, triple ta­laq and other is­sues re­lated to their em­pow­er­ment.”

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