Former Bihar deputy chief minister Tarkishore Prasad on Sunday demanded that a treason case should be registered against Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) for comparing the structure of new parliament building to a coffin, saying that no political party has the right to make anti-national statements.
As the new parliament complex in the national capital was inaugurated on Sunday, the RJD in a tweet posted a picture of a coffin with aerial image of the newly built building.
"They (RJD) should be prosecuted for such statements. It is a day of national pride. Today is a day to strengthen the democratic system because the Parliament reflects the public opinion of the entire country," Prasad, a senior leader of the BJP, told ANI.
"It is a criminal statement. A case of treason should be registered RJD," Prasad said while referring to the RJD's tweet.
The RJD on its offcial handle at the microblogging site had captioned the tweet as 'Yeh kya hai? (What is this?), drawing sharp criticism from various quarters including the BJP.
"What can be more disrespectful for democracy? This shows the cheap mindset of the political party when on a day of pride, an auspicious day, when a new parliament is being dedicated to the nation, they are comparing it to a coffin. They have tweeted a picture of a coffin. A case of sedition must be registered against such people," the BJP leader added.
Taking a dig at the RJD, a part of the Nitish Kumar-led coalition government in Bihar, Prasad said that India's glorious democratic tradition has roots in the state as its Vaishali District had the world's first democratic setup.
Defending his party, RJD leader Shakti Singh Yadav said, "The coffin in our tweet is a representation of democracy being buried. The country will not accept this. Parliament is the temple of democracy and it is the place to have discussions."
Twenty-five opposition parties boycotted the inauguration of the new parliament building, saying that that it "insults the high office of the President, and violates the letter and spirit of the Constitution".
In a joint statement, the like-minded opposition parties said that Prime Minister's decision to inaugurate the building by himself is "a direct assault on our democracy, which demands a commensurate response." (ANI)