Subramanian Swamy says he would’ve made a better Finance Minister than Arun Jaitley
BJP MP Subramanian Swamy today said as an economist, he would have made a better Finance Minister than Arun Jaitley, who is only a lawyer.
Speaking at India Today’s Mind Rocks summit in New Delhi, the firebrand BJP leader said, “Jaitley is only a lawyer while I am an economist. It is self-evident who would make a better Finance Minister.”
Interestingly, Swamy made the remarks after his co-panellist and Lok Sabha MP Asaduddin Owaisi exhorted him to
When the host Rahul Kanwal asked why there is a “India-Pakistan-like tension” between him and Jaitley, Swamy said there has always been a tussle between “south and north Indian Brahmins”.
While Swamy is from Tamil Nadu, Jaitley is from Delhi with roots in Punjab.
The Swamy-Jaitley tussle
The open Swamy-Jaitley tussle goes back a few months. Though the two leaders were not exactly the best friends in the BJP, the tension between them came to the force in the controversy involving Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian and Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das.
After he had successfully ensured the ouster of former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan, Swamy had started gunning for Subramanian and Das. But Jaitley was not going to be amused again and tweeted his defence of the two.
This enraged Swamy who tweeted: “People giving me unasked for advice of discipline and restraint don’t realize that if I disregard discipline there would be a blood bath.”
A few days later, Swamy launched a more direct and below-the-belt attack on the Finance Minister. “BJP should direct our ministers to wear traditional and modernised Indian clothes while abroad. In coat and tie, they look like waiters,” Swamy tweeted while Jaitley was on a tour to China and was seen wearing a suit and black tie.
The open war between the two senior BJP leaders did not go down well with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who warned Swamy against “seeking publicity”.
But Swamy perhaps also feels burdened by a certain reputation to carry, i.e. of being a motormouth. “There is no one in India who can stop me,” the BJP Rajya Sabha MP said at the India Today event.