CHENNAI: A brief period of awkwardness on a politically heavy dais was apparent, after Congress MP P Viswanathan ‘missed out’ on welcoming DMK Minister D Napoleon. Viswanathan - who is the sitting MP from Kancheepuram constituency - welcomed almost 40 persons. He managed to get the names of everyone from Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Mukul Wasnik to DMK cadre from Muttukadu. But he forgot to welcome the actor-turned-politician. Finally, just as he was about to conclude, he stopped mid-sentence and hastily welcomed his “brother and comrade” Napoleon. This happened during the inaugural of the National Institute for Empowerment of Persons with Multiple Disabilities on Saturday.
Even as party cadre from the DMK and Congress, seated in the audience, appeared to have taken note of the slight, Napoleon attempted to set it right during his address. “I do not know what has made him angry enough to not welcome me. After all, he did manage to thank everyone including the sound men and light men, but not me,” he said. As soon as Napoleon made this remark, a tittering broke out amongst the cadre and a flustered Viswanathan looked around frantically, reaffirming with people whether he had indeed welcomed the Minister of State.
Napoleon went on to add in a lighter tone, “We see each other in Parliament everyday and we’re really very good friends. Perhaps he just didn’t remember to welcome me, because he considers me a part of himself,” he added subtly.
Though Mukul Wasnik seemed appeased with the eventual bonhomie, he appeared apprehensive till Viswanathan apologised and gifted Napoleon a shawl.