Day 2 in parliament and Swamy has Rajya Sabha on the boil
New Delhi: It was just second day of newly nominated Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy in office and he succeeded in doing what he does best- provoking his political opponents.
Known for his strong political views, Swamy stirred up a hornet's nest after he took name of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and sought a discussion on AgustaWestland deal.
As soon as he took Congress president's name, all hell break loose with Congress MPs storming the the well of the house protesting his remarks leading to the the adjournment.
Nevertheless, he was Centre of attention in the house with BJP lawmakers, seemingly complimenting him for getting under Congress members’ skins.
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar walked up to him and was seen exchanging notes with Swamy. HRD Minister Smriti Irani too walked up and complimented him.
Few Congress leaders including Anand Sharma and Leader of the House and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley walked into the Chairman's chamber during the break.
Just before the House reassembled, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi took Swamy aside, apparently to give him some advice.
After the second adjournment, Jaitley took Swamy with him for a chat on the issue.
With a Twitter following of nearly 2.57 million as of Monday (Twitter handle - @Swamy39), his flock is five times as large as Rahul Gandhi (@Officeof RG - 574k), one of his pet targets of attack. Few politicians outside the power structure, barring possibly Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) with 4.12 million), have his kind of following on social media. Not even BJP president Amit Shah (@AmitShah), with 1.94 million followers, is that popular.
A known basher of Gandhi family, Swamy, who worked relentlessly and succeeded in bringing Sonia and Rahul to court in National Herald case, has the strong backing of RSS.
The VVIP chopper deal relates to a 2010 decision of the UPA government to buy 12 helicopters from Italian manufacturer, Finmeccanica. But reports later said the Italian company had paid a bribe of up to Rs 3,565 crore to swing the deal.
Though the Italian company was blacklisted by UPA, it was part of Modi government's 'Make in India' drive, the Congress leader alleged.