NEW DELHI: Days after controversy over NCP chief Sharad Pawar skipping Prime Minister Narendra Modi's swearing-in ceremony due to seat allotment in the fifth row, the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Wednesday clarified that the senior politician was invited to the VVIP section where most senior guests were seated.
In a tweet, Ashok Malik, Press Secretary to President Ram Nath Kovind stated that Pawar's seat was designated in the first row of the VVIP section.
"At the swearing-in ceremony on May 30, Mr Sharad Pawar was invited to the "V section", where the most senior guests sat. Even within "V", he had a labelled first row seat. Somebody in his office may have confused V (for VVIP) for the Roman V (five)," Malik said in a tweet.
This clarification is being issued following inaccurate reports such as the one linked above, as well as some media queries we have received today— Ashok Malik (@MalikAshok) June 5, 2019
The clarification was issued after contrary media reports and media queries received by the President's office, Malik explained in another tweet.
As per various media reports, Pawar's party was miffed over seat allotment being contrary to protocol.
Prime Minister Modi and his council of ministers were sworn in for a second term on May 30 at a grand-ceremony organised in the forecourt of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Several foreign dignitaries including the leaders from BIMSTEC nations attended the event.