Minutes after the Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi asked senior party leader Mani Shankar Aiyar to apologise for his ‘neech’ remark, Aiyar, while briefing the media on his ‘neech’ comment said, “I meant low level when I said ‘neech’, I think in English when I speak in Hindi as Hindi is not my mother tongue. So if it has some other meaning then I apologise.” Clarifying on the kind on language which he used against PM Modi, Mani Shankar Aiyar further added, “Why was PM taking a jibe at Congress and Rahul Gandhi at inauguration of a Centre on Baba Saheb Ambedkar? Everyday PM is using foul language against our leaders. I am a freelance Congressi, I hold no post in the party, so I can reply to PM in his language.”

A while ago, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi after Aiyar’s ‘neech’ remark row, took to his Twitter account and asked the senior party leader to apologise. Rahul Gandhi said, “BJP and PM routinely use filthy language to attack the Congress party. The Congress has a different culture and heritage. I do not appreciate the tone and language used by Mr Mani Shankar Aiyer to address the PM. Both the Congress and I expect him to apologise for what he said.”

Further giving a clarification over his earlier comments when he has called PM Modi a chaiwala, Mani Shankar Aiyar said, “I never called Mr. Modi a ‘Chaiwala’, you can go on the internet and check all the videos.”

Speaking on Congress leader ‘neech’ remark controversy, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said, “I think it is a well thought strategy by the Congress, to use filthy language about PM and spread misinformation but when there is public outrage they apologise. It is not just a matter of filthy language but of Congress’ mindset which says that only one family can rule this country and if someone from the weaker section becomes PM then they call him ‘chaiwala’ and ‘neech’.”

Earlier, hitting out at Mani Shankar Aiyar, PM Modi while addressing an election rally in Gujarat’s Surat asked the people of state not to react on Aiyar’s neech remark but to give their reply in the forthcoming assembly elections. PM Modi said, “I beg to the people of India, please let them be. Let them keep calling me ‘neech’ we will not respond. We do not have this mindset and want to congratulate them for theirs. If anything, we will answer them for their mindset with our votes on 9th and 14th.”