August 13, 2022

Published from Mumbai, Delhi & Bhopal

Congress mulling action against Manish Tewari for defying party line

New Delhi : The Congress has sought a report on party MP Manish Tewari for his alleged anti-party line on key issues. The party is mulling action as Tewari recently defied the party line on the Agnipath scheme and supported it despite the party being against it.

Sources say that a senior Congress leader close to the Gandhis called Tewari and persuaded him not to go against the party line. However, the next day Tewari did not sign the memorandum seeking immediate withdrawal of the Agnipath scheme, submitted by the Opposition MPs during a crucial meeting with members of the Parliamentary Consultative Committee on Defence on Monday, sources had said.

This is not the first time that Tewari has taken an independent view on issues where the Congress is targeting the government. Earlier party general secretary Jairam Ramesh distanced the party from his support to the scheme.

Tewari is one of the most vocal voices of G-23 and feels that since 2014 he is being ignored and after his electoral win in the Lok Sabha polls in 2019 he is not being given key positions in the party nor in the parliamentary party despite having a good grip over various issues.

Tewari, who is considered close to former Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, has a long association with the Congress starting from the NSUI, Youth Congress and was Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting in UPA-2. Tewari has been part of the meeting of the parliamentary strategy group which is chaired by Sonia Gandhi.

In the past also, Tewari has supported the ‘Agnipath’ scheme. Speaking , Tewari had said, “The process of defence reforms including right sizing the military started in the US way back in 1975 when Donald Rumsfeld was the Defence Secretary in the Ford administration and every successive administration has seen it through. Rumsfeld initiated the conceptual basis of preparing the armed forces for future warfare as he could envision the changing nature of the battlefield. Even the Chinese started the process of right-sizing the PLA way back in 1985.”

Apart from Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, the Defence Secretary, the three chiefs of the Armed Forces and other senior officials of the Ministry of Defence were also present at the Monday meeting.

Out of the total 12 MPs at the meeting, six were from the Opposition parties that included the Congress, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and the Trinamool Congress (TMC).

Hindi Website