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Chidambaram hits back at Modi over his "recounting minister" taunt

How many times can people in high places peddle a lie, asks the former finance minister

By PTI in Chennai
  • Published 11.02.19, 5:34 PM
  • Updated 11.02.19, 5:34 PM
  • a min read
Chidambaram in Parliament on Monday. PTI

Senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram on Monday hit back at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for apparently calling him "recounting minister", insisting that there had been no re-count of votes in the 2009 Lok Sabha polls.

"In the 2009 elections, in Sivaganga constituency, there was only one count and no re-count. A simple check with the Returning Officer would have confirmed that there was no re-count. How many times can people in high places peddle a lie?" Chidambaram said in a tweet.

The former Union minister's response came a day after Modi taunted him as "recounting minister" of the UPA regime, during his public meeting at Tirupur on Sunday.

Citing his government's step of offering tax exemption for those with income of up to Rs 5 lakh, Modi had said that it was a reflection of genuine concern for the middle class, unlike the previous UPA regime.

"There was a very wise minister from Tamil Nadu," he said, adding, "you know who I am talking about".

When the people responded loudly, he said, "right, the recounting minister", without naming the former Union finance minister.

Chidambaram, now a Rajya Sabha MP, won the 2009 Lok Sabha election from Sivaganga constituency in Tamil Nadu by a slender margin of 3,354 votes after a see-saw battle.

Confusion had prevailed then as election officials delayed the declaration of the result due to a dispute in the counting of votes in the final round.

Chidambaram, then home minister, was declared elected after the votes were tallied again, vis-a-vis the final round.

Modi had made the same "recounting minister" remark during his 2014 Lok Sabha election campaign as well.