Manohar Parrikar’s jibe on Aamir Khan rocks Parliament

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar is facing a lot backlash for raking up actor Aamir Khan’s ‘intolerance remarks’ controversy. On Monday, the Union Minister was attacked in the Rajya Sabha by opposition members who accused him of “spreading insecurity.”

"May I ask what type of lesson he is going to teach us? The entire nation must know," Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad asked. CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury said, "Raksha Mantri can't spread araksha (insecurity).” Former Uttar Pradesh chief minister and Bahujan Samaj Party president Mayawati demanded an explanation from the Prime Minister on "why he is not reining in his ministers on what they say."

During a book release function in Pune on Saturday, Mr. Parrikar, in an obvious reference to the ‘PK’ actor, had said, “An actor had said his wife was afraid of living in this country.... How does someone dare to talk about this country? If anyone speaks like this, he has to be taught the lesson of his life.”

Mr Parrikar, who was present in the House on Monday, suggested that members watch the video of his speech rather than rely on media reports. In a disclaimer, he has said he did not mention anyone by name and was "only talking about people who talk against the country and not about someone's freedom of speech."

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi criticised the Defence Minister for raking up the controversy again through his official Twitter handle Office of RG (@OfficeOfRG). “RSS & Parrikarji want to teach everyone a lesson. Here's a lesson for you: hate is the preserve of the coward and it never wins,” the tweet on Sunday read.

Congress spokesperson Randeep S Surjewala tweeted that it was a "shocking revelation" by Parrikar and showed that BJP and RSS supporters actively disrupted and sabotaged an online trading company on Aamir Khan issue.

“#Shocking revelation by @manoharparrikar that BJP supporters actively disrupted, sabotaged Snapdeal on Aamir Khan issue. Scandalous!

“Is @manoharparrikar job to protect India from external aggressors like Pakistan or threaten fellow countrymen like actor Aamir Khan?” he tweeted.