Expressing regrets for referring to President Droupadi Murmu in the singular, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, while admitting it as a gaffe on his part, said he has immense respect for her as she also comes from oppressed classes like him. He was referring to his remark at a state-level convention of the oppressed communities organised by the Federation of Associations of Oppressed Communities and Federation of Karnataka Backward Classes’ on Sunday, which had come under sharp criticism by the opposition BJP and JD(S).
JD(S) leader and former Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, demanded Siddaramaiah’s dismissal from the Chief Minister’s post for addressing the President in the singular. Union Minister and senior BJP leader Pralhad Joshi said Siddaramaiah has again proven that he has utmost disregard for the Constitution and those who represent it, holding supreme positions. Siddaramaiah, in a post on ‘X’, said he was deeply hurt and angered as the President was not invited for the inaugural ceremony of the new Parliament building by the BJP leaders, “only because she belongs to Dalit community”.
“While speaking at the convention, I became a bit emotional and while expressing outrage, I addressed her in the singular as a slip of the tongue,” he clarified. Further noting that it is a practice to address parents and elders in the singular, in rural areas, from where he also comes, the Chief Minister said, “I have immense respect for the honourable President, as she also comes from oppressed classes like me. She should not have been addressed in the singular. I express my regrets for this gaffe.”
Hitting out at the CM in a series of posts on ‘X’, along with the clipping of his speech addressing the President in the singular, Kumaraswamy said Siddaramaiah does not deserve to be in the Chief Minister’s post even for a moment. He should immediately resign taking moral responsibility or the Governor should remove him from the post.
Joshi said on ‘X’: “Dear Siddaramaiah, I seriously don’t understand what’s gotten into you and your party! You have time and again proven that you have utmost disregard for the Constitution and those who represent it, holding supreme positions,” Addressing the President and that too a woman in the singular is extremely disgraceful, he said.
“This coming from a law student like you is even more shocking and disappointing. Either education has escaped you or you are becoming senile. I wonder which it is! Neither age nor experience are reflected in your words and actions!'”.