KOLKATA: Union Minister Smriti Irani on Saturday slammed the Congress for disrupting the proceedings in Parliament demanding an independent investigation into the allegations of fraud against billionaire Gautam Adani's companies that triggered an unprecedented stock crash.
She alleged it is a reflection of the animosity the party has towards President Droupadi Murmu from the day she took office.
Parliament was adjourned for the second consecutive day on Friday without transacting any business after the Opposition stepped up its demand for an independent investigation into the allegations of fraud against billionaire Gautam Adani's companies that triggered an unprecedented stock crash.
Proceedings in both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha were disrupted as Opposition members raised slogans demanding a discussion and a JPC probe into the fraud-allegation-triggered rout.
"The government has repeatedly said they are open for any conversation, but why would it not begin (not allow) with a vote of thanks to the President's speech? That the Opposition has always taken a stand which is anti-President of India is known to every citizen of the country," the Union Women and Child Development minister said while addressing a press conference here.
She alleged that it had been the political mandate of the Congress party not to show respect to the President of India.
"That President Droupadi Murmu has given a speech which lays not only the foundation of the future of India but also exhibits our present potential, the issues that need to debate and thanks to be given to the hon'ble president of India," she said.
"Why would the Congress party deny that respect to the President of India? But I am not surprised that they will deny respect to the President of India because that has been their political mandate from the day the hon'ble President took office," she said.
Reacting to Irani's allegations, the Leader of the Congress party in Lok Sabha, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, dubbed it baseless.
"The union minister doesn't know the rules and regulations of the House. The allegations against us are baseless. Due to the investment made by LIC, SBI in Adani Group, the money of common citizens of the country is sinking. The Opposition demands an inquiry into the entire matter," he told PTI.
Adani Group has lost more than USD 100 billion in market value since Hindenburg Research accused it of stock manipulation and accounting fraud in the January 24 report.
The group has denied any wrongdoing and has threatened to sue Hindenburg.