Don’t call MP old, speaker advises minister

April 17th, 2008 - 9:22 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Ambika Soni
(From the corridors of power)

New Delhi, April 17 (IANS) Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee Thursday came to the rescue of Varkala Radhakrishnan, senior Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPM) MP from Chirayinkil, Kerala, when he was at the receiving end of repartee from Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel. Radhakrishnan asked a supplementary question on whether Thiruvananthapuram airport was one of the greenfield airports. Responding to it, Patel said a greenfield airport implies a new airport. “Thiruvananthapuram is old like you. And old is gold,” Patel said.

At this Chatterjee interrupted and said: “I object. You cannot call him old.” Amidst laughter, Patel replied: “I also called him gold, sir.”

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Improved newspaper copies, courtesy Rajiv

External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee says journalists should be grateful to former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi.

“You all should thank him for all the measures he took during his prime ministership. The Internet revolution and mobile phones, for instance. Others now take credit for them,” Mukherjee said while interacting with a few journalists in his office in parliament.

“You can compare your newspaper copies of the earlier times and the ones now and see the difference (that technology has made),” he said.

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Jayaprada chats up Lalu, others amused

Samajwadi Party MP and film actor Jayaprada Thursday walked up to Railway Minister Lalu Prasad in the Lok Sabha to chat with him on what appeared to be some personal matter while other members watched in amusement.

While Zero Hour was on, Jayaprada, who represents the Rampur constituency of Uttar Pradesh, walked up to Lalu Prasad with a piece of paper in hand. She sat next to him in the front row and drew his attention to the paper in her hand. He seemed to give her some assurance.

All this while, Tourism Minister Ambika Soni, who was seated two rows behind Lalu Prasad, kept a keen eye on the goings-on. Others seated behind her also kept looking at the two, ignoring the member who was speaking.

Later when the discussion on the railway budget was on, Jayaprada walked up to Lalu Prasad again, probably to bring up the same matter. This time her party member Ram Gopal Yadav, who had moved from his seat to chat with a Congress MP sitting a few feet away from Lalu Prasad, passed a comment. Jayaprada laughed it off but Lalu Prasad responded, leading to more laughter.

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Lalu praises Indira Gandhi

Railway Minister Lalu Prasad Thursday showered praise on late prime minister Indira Gandhi for her understanding of Indian ethos and culture.

The praise came ahead of an announcement to promote traditional Madhubani paintings of Bihar, while Lalu Prasad was responding to a discussion on the Railways Appropriation Bill in the Lok Sabha.

However, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief had to fight Indira Gandhi early in his political career.

He first got elected to the Lok Sabha in 1977 from Chhapra, Bihar, on the Janata Party ticket following the anti-emergency wave. During the Emergency imposed by Gandhi, he was jailed under the Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA) - he even named his first daughter Misa after the act.

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Advani’s follows rail debate

Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate and Leader of Opposition L.K. Advani is seen in the Lok Sabha usually only when there is an important debate. But Thursday was different.

He arrived in the house before Lalu Prasad began his reply to the discussion on the Railways Appropriation Bill, and waited till the minister concluded.

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