After Manohar Parrikar’s remark about an actor (presumed to be Aamir Khan) and an online trading company (presumed to be Snapdeal) created a major furore in Rajya Sabha, Defence Minister in his defence on Monday said that he has not taken anyone’s name and also not threatened anyone. “I have not taken anyone’s name, I did not threaten anyone”. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Saturday said anyone speaking against the country must be “taught a lesson” in the same way that an “actor” and an “online trading company” were taught.
Parrikar took no names. But in November 2015, at the Ramnath Goenka Awards, actor Aamir Khan had spoken about a “sense of insecurity” resulting from increasing intolerance in the country, and mentioned his wife Kiran Rao’s apprehensions about the future of their child in India. A few months later, e-commerce giant Snapdeal, for which Khan was brand ambassador, did not renew his contract. Snapdeal had earlier faced a strong backlash on social media, including a reported loss of customers.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi also attacked Parrikar and RSS over his jibe at actor Aamir Khan, telling them bluntly “hate is the preserve of the coward and it never wins”. “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 Congress Vice President said on Twitter. The opposition party accused BJP and RSS of a “concerted conspiracy” to hound Dalits, minorities, writers, actors and whoever dissents against the Narendra Modi government.