The Bharatiya Janata Party has drawn flak from the opposition for allegedly ‘disrespecting the national flag’ when its leaders including party president JP Nadda and Prime Minister Narendra Modi gathered to pay tributes to former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh who passed away after a prolonged illness yesterday. Congress MP Shashi Tharoor said that the nation should be told about how the BJP feels about the ‘insult’ of the national flag.
“As one who had to fight a court case for four years merely for placing my hand on my heart during the singing of the National Anthem (rather than standing stiffly to attention), I think the nation should be told how the ruling party feels about this insult,” said Tharoor.
Activist and TMC leader Saket Gokhale termed the incident as shameful. “If this were a civilian in UP, they’d be charged with sedition. But what’d a party that never participated in the freedom struggle know what the national flag means. Arrogance is one thing. To consider your party as being above the nation is just shameful,” he said.
If this were a civilian in UP, they’d be charged with sedition.
But what’d a party that never participated in the freedom struggle know what the national flag means.
Arrogance is one thing. To consider your party as being above the nation is just shameful. pic.twitter.com/wn1elGOrCr
— Saket Gokhale (@SaketGokhale) August 22, 2021
AIMIM MP Imtiaz Jaleel termed the act as ‘anti-national’. No other flag can be placed above my Tiranga. How can BJP flag be placed over our Tricolour. This is an anti national act,” he said.
No other flag can be placed above my Tiranga. How can BJP flag be placed over our Tricolour. This is an anti national act. pic.twitter.com/Pe5kExU8Rs
— Imtiaz Jaleel (@imtiaz_jaleel) August 22, 2021
Saral Patel, National Convener, Congress, shared the photo of the incident and slammed the RSS and the BJP for the incident. “Those who did not hoist the flag of the country for 52 years have once again insulted the tricolor, the insult to the tricolor is in the blood of RSS,” said Patel.
52 वर्षो तक देश का झंडा न फहराने वालो ने आज फिर एक बार तिरंगे का अपमान किया है, तिरंगे का अपमान RSS के खून मैं है। pic.twitter.com/KR1mC33j5s
— Saral Patel (@SaralPatel) August 23, 2021
Congress National Coordinator, Digital Communications & Social Media, Gaurav Pandhi, asked that who will arrest JP Nadda for disrespecting the national flag?
Who is going to arrest JP Nadda for disrespecting the national flag?
— Gaurav Pandhi (@GauravPandhi) August 22, 2021
Samajwadi Party spokesperson Ghanshyam Tiwari also hit out at the BJP for placing the party flag over the national flag.
— Ghanshyam Tiwari (@ghanshyamtiwari) August 22, 2021
Former Secretary, Government of India, Anil Swarup said that even Kalyan Singh would have detested placing the party flag over the national flag.
Knowing Late Kalyan Singh ji as well as I did, he would have detested placing party flag over the National Flag. Someone really messed it up here…..and others allowed it to continue. pic.twitter.com/4mzvl0Kltr
— Anil Swarup (@swarup58) August 22, 2021
BJP yesterday shared the photo of its party president JP Nadda and other party leaders paying homage to the late Kalyan Singh. In one of the photos, JP Nadda along with another leader was seen placing a BJP flag over the national flag placed in which Kalyan Singh was wrapped.
— BJP (@BJP4India) August 22, 2021
Notably, late Kalyan Singh had in one of his speeches expressed the wish that he wants to remain in the BJP for lifetime and even want his body to be wrapped in the BJP flag when he dies. His wish may have prompted the BJP leaders to place the party flag over the body. However, as per the guidelines, no flag should be placed higher or above the national flag.