Food Prices Drop - Sharad Pawar Slapped

By: DoYouKnow.IN | Views: 1194 | Date: 24-Nov-2011

If only Harvinder Singh had read today’s headlines, he would have seen that India’s food inflation actually fell significantly for the third consecutive week. And his hot head might have cooled.

If only Harvinder Singh had read today’s headlines, he would have seen that India’s food inflation actually fell significantly for the third consecutive week. And his hot head might have cooled.

Unfortunately for Sharad Pawar, Mr. Harvinder Singh instead focused his attention on the left side of the agriculture minister’s face, to which he administered a pretty hefty open-handed slap at the New Delhi Municipal Council building.

Sharad Pawar Slapped

This has become something of a habit in New Delhi for disgruntled people with a cause, a decent aim, and a television camera standing by.

Just ask Prashant Bhushan, lawyer and aide to activist Anna Hazare, who last month was assaulted in his office by a young man who found Mr. Bhushan’s remarks on self-determination in Kashmir to be so offensive that he started swinging. Or former telecom minister Sukhram, who was slapped and kicked in court earlier this week by a man identified by NDTV as none other than Harvinder Singh – which makes you wonder how many causes Mr. Singh gets irate about in an average week.

As he went for Mr. Sharad Pawar, Mr. Singh shouted that he was angry at the minister for not being able to control food prices and inflation. He called him a “chor” (a thief) and drew his “Kirpan” (a ceremonial dagger carried by Sikhs) before being led away.

Speaking on television, Mr. Sharad Pawar recounted the incident, saying: “As I was going to my car, a group of journalists came and started asking questions. This man was also in the audience and he came forward and tried to attack me.” Mr. Sharad Pawar restrained from commenting on Mr. Singh’s alleged motivation.

Mr. Sharad Pawar added that the question of whether there was a breach of security doesn’t arise since “he doesn’t take security” with him and the man might have “taken advantage of that.” Asked if he would review his security now, he said he would think over it.

The incident was being viewed by some politicians as a sign of the anger and frustration of the common man against rising prices that the United Progressive Alliance government has struggled to contain. But many also questioned the repeated attacks made on public figures and the lack of police action.

Rajiv Pratap Rudy, spokesman for India’s main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, called the episode “highly condemnable” and said that there are groups of people who “find publicity out of this.” Mr. Rudy also questioned why Mr. Singh, given his stunt in court earlier this week, was “scot free.”

We would add that Mr. Singh might garner more public sympathy if he stopped picking on old men. Mr. Pawar is 70, Mr. Sukhram is in his 80s.
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