Azad should be appreciated: Karan Singh on Padma award row in Cong

Amid the Congress hostility on Padma Bhushan award conferred to Ghulam Nabi Azad, senior party leader Karan Singh has come out in his open support and said he was “distressed” on the unseemly controversy and Azad should be appreciated for his hard Work and dedication.

In a statement issued on Thursday, the Congress leader said, “I am distressed with the unseemly controversy over the well deserved Padma award to my good friend Ghulam Nabi Azad.”

“These national awards should not become a subject of inter party controversy, far less intra party ones,” he added.

He said that he knew Azad from 1971 and he rose with sheer hard work and dedication and as the Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha he played a positive and constructive role.

“If one of our colleagues is honoured, he should be appreciated with warm regards rather than snide remarks,” he said.

The internal rift in the Congress party has surfaced again after the party’s senior leader Ghulam Nabi Azad was conferred Padma Bhushan award. While the G-23 leaders are hailing the former Rajya Sabha leader of opposition, there has been no reaction from the party compelling Kapil Sibal to criticise the silence.

The Congress seems divided on the Padma Bhushan award conferred to its leader, Ghulam Nabi Azad. Party leader Kapil Sibal has come in open support of Azad after cryptic tweets by Jairam Ramesh.

Sibal tweeted, “Ghulam Nabi Azad conferred Padam Bhushan, Congratulations bhaijan, Ironic that the Congress doesn’t need his services when the nation recognises his contributions to public life”.

After the announcement of Padma awards, Jairam Ramesh taking a cue from the rejection by West bengal former Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharya, took a dig at his party colleague Ghulam Nabi Azad, who has also been awarded the Padma Bhushan.

Ramesh tweeted on Bhattacharya’s refusal to accept the award: “Right thing to do. He wants to be Azad not Ghulam.”

The comment was indirectly aimed at his party colleague Ghulam Nabi Azad, who was conferred the Padma Bhushan in the field of Public Affairs.

Azad is also a former Union minister and till recently, he was the Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha. Azad was one of the first in the Congress to stoke the leadership issue in the party.

Former Chief Minister of West Bengal, Buddhadeb Bhattacharya, on Tuesday refused to accept the Padma Bhushan award conferred upon him by the government of India.

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