As Vijayawada MP L. Rajagopal used pepper spray against his fellow MPs in the Lok Sabha, he triggered a firestorm in the virtual world, with tweets ranging from outright condemnation to sarcasm.
The hashtag #PepperSpray topped in all India trends and across all top cities with the surprise exception of Hyderabad, where it was trending below #Telangana #Parliament #Lok Sabha #MPs.
BJP MP Anurag Thakur tweeted: “Disgraceful act by CongMP L Rajgopal,who used pepper spray. Civility in the House absent. Cong making a joke of democracy”
Another tweeter, @Babu_Bhaiyaa, said “Dear China and Pakistan, U don't need to launch Nuclear weapons to creat chaos & havoc in Indian Media & Parliament. A #PepperSpray is enough”
Joji Varghese on a commercial note @j0j1 says, "This session of Indian parliament brought to you by MDH #PepperSpray. Ashli swaadh Ashli weapon."
News channel AajTak was concerned about the safety of Rajya Sabha MP Sachin Tendulkar and tweeted a picture with the Bharat Ratna sporting a gas mask, while going to attend Parliament, just in case.
While the Congress was blamed for all the mess, some tweeters noted the silence of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on the issue. The BJP Prime Ministerial candidate often reacts on such issues, often almost immediately. Other twitter-savvy MP Sushma Swaraj was also silent.
And one tweeter blamed the Aam Aadmi Party for the incident. “@ArvindKejriwal is responsible, as Aam Aadmi produced pepper!” tweeted @pankajmishra23
Incidentally Mr. Kejriwal had not responded either to the ‘parliament attack’ till late in the afternoon.