Cong sacks content editor of party journal that criticized Nehru, Sonia Gandhi

MUMBAI: Mumbai Congress chief Sanjay Nirupam has actually apologized for articles in party journal criticising Jawaharlal Nehru and Sonia Gandhi even as the party sacked the content editor of Mumbai Congress Darshan Sudhir Joshi.

Left red-faced by the articles in the party mouthpiece targeting Jawaharlal Nehru and Sonia Gandhi, a section of Mumbai unit of the Congress came down heavily on the journal’s editor Sanjay Nirupam and sought his apology and resignation over the issue.

An unsigned write-up in the Mumbai unit’s journal, coinciding with the party’s 131st foundation day, blamed Nehru for “the state of affairs in Kashmir, China and Tibet” even as another write-up made controversial remarks on party chief Sonia Gandhi, forcing Nirupam to order an inquiry even as he claimed he was unaware of the content.

Both these articles, which did not bear the name of the writer, have actually been published in this month’s issue of ‘Congress Darshan’ Hindi edition as a tribute to the country’s first estate minister Sardar Vallabbhai Patel on his death anniversary on December 15.

A city Congress leader, on condition of anonymity, said that the current edition of the Mumbai unit’s journal was essential as it was dedicated to party chief Sonia Gandhi, and Nirupam should apologize for the embarrassment caused to the party and resign from his post.

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“This is unpardonable and the impact made by the development on the party’s image is irrecoverable. He must immediately tender an apology to all the party workers of the country and submit his resignation. Nirupam has actually hanged down our heads with shame,” he said.

Another Congress leader said, “We should never forget that abusing Sonia was in the DNA of Nirupam ever since he was with the Shiv Sena.”

“Those days, Nirupam used all possible unparliamentary language to tarnish Sonia’s image and he is still carrying forward the same mindset,” he added.
“A leader with journalistic skills (Nirupam) can never be so casual, and prima-facie it looks like that he himself has actually published this article, which is a deep embarrassment to all party cadres,” another party leader said.
However, Nirupam said he was not involved in the day-to-day functioning of the magazine and was unaware of the articles.
“I admit the mistake. Inquiry will be initiated versus the editorial department which committed the mistake. We will take measures that such a mistake is not repeated,” Nirupam said.
Meanwhile, in his initial reaction, Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee president Ashok Chavan sought to play down the issue, saying that when Nirupam himself had clarified everything, he did not think it right to comment on it.