The week in social media| Chatter

first_img Shougat Dasgupta June 21, 2019UPDATED: June 22, 2019 23:51 IST Image for representationShameThe first day of the first session of Parliament saw the swearing-in of MPs, but Rahul Gandhi only showed up at four in the afternoon. Perhaps he wanted to avoid the love-in for the prime minister, the chants of Modi, Modi’ resounding through the hall. Predictably, Pragya Thakur’s induction met with protests. She took her oath in Sanskrit and appended to her name both the title of Sadhvi’ and the name of her guru, causing considerable confusion and prompting a reminder that she could swear only upon God or the Constitution. It took three attempts to quieten the protests. The hashtag #Ashamed trended on Indian Twitter, with many users claiming that seeing Sadhvi Pragya take her seat in Parliament made them feel ashamed. This, in turn, caused a lot of pious harrumphing from BJP supporters. Feeling shame and anger at the sight of a woman still fighting terror charges in court becoming a parliamentarian, they argued, amounted to disrespecting democracy and the choice of the people. It’s specious nonsense. As citizens in a democracy, we must respect the right of all voters to have a choice. But why should anyone respect the choice itself? Lots of awful, even villainous, people have won elections. And even if not awful or villainous, one can profoundly disagree with the election of an MP on ideological grounds or otherwise. These dissenters are not advocating overthrowing the government; they know they will have to tolerate the parliamentary presence of those whom they find unpalatable. But, surely, they can voice their resentment and disgust. That’s democracy to borrow the phrase right-wingers trot out so smugly whenever anyone expresses despair over the election result.advertisement Who Let the Cats OutPakistan’s cricketers embarrassed themselves before an audience of millions against their arch-rivals. Perhaps in a sympathetic attempt to take the public glare off Sarfaraz Ahmed and Co., Shaukat Yousafzai, information minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, also embarrassed himself in comic fashion on a public platform, inspiring laughter and mockery. Someone on Yousafzai’s social media team managed to turn on a cat filter while recording a video so that the honourable minister and his colleagues conducted their serious press conference while sporting pink ears and sweetly cartoonish whiskers. To be fair to Yousafzai, he took it well. I wasn’t the only one, he said, pointing to the two officials sitting beside him. It shouldn’t be taken so seriously, he added through gritted teeth. No doubt there’s a social media coordinator in Peshawar looking for work. Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byIram Ara Ibrahim Next The week in social media| ChatterTake a look at the social media highlights of the week.advertisementlast_img read more


Province House Gets Dressed Up For Big Day

first_imgCanada’s oldest seat of government is taking on a new and colourful look as red, white and blue bunting is draped from Province House. The bunting, along with flags and banners, are part of the lead up to the major celebrations marking the 250th anniversary of representative government in Nova Scotia and the birth of parliamentary democracy in Canada. “It is only fitting that Province House be a focal point of celebrations planned for Oct. 2, the date on which Canada’s first elected assembly met,” said Democracy 250 co-chair Russell MacLellan. To mark this proud first for Nova Scotia, there will be a special ceremony in the legislature from 10 a.m. to noon on Thursday, Oct. 2. Following the ceremony, there will be an open house from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. featuring an historic timeline, a display of original historic documents, a newly developed virtual tour of the legislature. Two performances by actor and author Michael Bawtree, who will take on the role of Joseph Howe, will be held at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Period dancers will also demonstrate 18th century dances in the Red Chamber. Mr. MacLellan said a highlight of the day will be the unveiling of a huge card of thanks to be sent to members of Canada’s military serving in Afghanistan. “The thank you card is a way for Nova Scotians to acknowledge the men and women who put themselves at risk so others can live with greater peace and security,” he said. “We hope as many Nova Scotians as possible come to the legislature and show their support for our brave service men and women.” Along with the many events planned for the legislature, there will be a wide range of events taking place in Grand Parade. For a full schedule of Oct. 2 events, visit www.democracy250.ca .last_img read more