Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde was on Thursday forced to apologise in the Rajya Sabha after he made certain remarks about Samajwadi Party member Jaya Bachchan.
Mr. Shinde was replying to a short duration debate on the Assam violence and Ms. Bachchan, an actor, expressed unhappiness over the reply, saying the Minister was not responding to specific queries raised by members.
“This is a serious matter. This is not the subject of a film,” Mr. Shinde said, snapping at Ms. Bachchan for interrupting him.
Ms. Bachchan took serious exception to the comment and was joined by other members, triggering an uproar in the House.
Leader of the Opposition Arun Jaitley said Ms. Bachchan is a distinguished celebrity and a member of the House and “as Home Minister of India, you cannot make a taunt on her in this House. I will urge the Home Minister to make amends and withdraw comments so that the House can proceed.”
Mr. Shinde insisted that Ms. Bachchan was not doing the right thing to interrupt when the Home Minister was talking.
At this, Mr. Jaitley sought the intervention of Tariq Anwar, who was in the Chair asking for deletion of Mr. Shinde’s remarks if he was not willing to withdraw them.
Mr. Shinde, then said, “If she is hurt by my comments, I apologise for that. She is my sister.” The Home Minister maintained that he knew the entire Bachchan family for which “I have great respect.”