FM Goyal challenges Kharge to contest against him as Cong, BJP MPs clash over Rafale
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FM Goyal challenges Kharge to contest against him as Cong, BJP MPs clash over Rafale

New Delhi, Aug 9: Finance Minister Piyush Goyal on Thursday challenged senior Congress Leader Mallikarjun Kharge to contest election against him (Goyal) from Mumbai after Congress and BJP members clashed fiercely over a remark by the Congress floor leader.

'I challenge Mr Kharge to come to Mumbai and contest election on any seat against me,' Mr Goyal said in the Lok Sabha during a debate on the GST bills.

His remarks came after Mr Kharge said the Minister 'who is not elected and cannot win election, should not advise or demean the Congress members'. The proceedings in the House turned bitter when Congress members insisted on the JPC demand for probing the Rafale deal.

The remarks from Congress floor leader sparked intense chaos in the House with members from both sides hitting out at each other.

Mr Kharge said it is the Congress which protected democracy and that is why the BJP is in power today.

Making a brief intervention, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said it was unbecoming of Mr Kharge to make such a remark against a member of Rajya Sabha and a Minister.

'We have high respect for Manmohan Singh and Mr Kharge should not forget that Dr Singh, who was prime minister twice, was also a Rajya Sabha Member only,' he said, adding that the question Mr Kharge has raised about Mr Goyal should also apply to the former prime minister.

Mr Goyal said,'I did not expect that out of frustration Mr Kharge will take the debate to such a level and make a personal attack.'

Mr Ananth Kumar demanded that some of the remarks of Mr Kharge be expunged.

Defending his colleague, Congress Member K C Venugopal said Mr Goyal also made a political speech and tried to attack the Congress while piloting the GST Bill. (UNI)