New Delhi: Summing up his brief political career of four long decades, veteran Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on February 9, gave his retirement speech in Rajya Sabha by reciting few Urdu couplets and telling how proud he is to be born in India.
Congress MP Ghulam Nabi Azad’s heartfelt speech that moved everyone went as, “I would like to depart with only a few words using a few couplets. A ten-hour speech can be summed up in merely two couplets by a poet. And I would like to take that approach. To express my thoughts on my entire political career would be a tough task to perform,” said Azad while looking back at his long political career in Rajya Sabha.
Recalling the early days of partition, the senior Congress leader said, “I am among those fortunate people who never went to Pakistan. When I read about circumstances in Pakistan, I feel proud to be a Hindustani Muslim.”
“If any Muslim should feel proud in the world, it should be the Indian Muslim. Over the years, we have seen how Muslims countries from Afghanistan Iraq getting destroyed. There are no Hindus or Christians there — they are fighting amongst themselves,” he added.
Azad’s retirement also moved prime minister Narendra Modi who broke down while recalling his long association with his rival leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, who has contributed a lot to the country, the House and his party.
Praising the opposition leader’s contribution to the causes dear to him, the Prime Minister said, “The person who will replace Ghulam Nabi ji (as Leader of Opposition) will have difficulty matching his work because he was not only concerned about his party but also about the country and the House.”
Choked with emotions, Modi also recalled an incident where Azad’s personal intervention led to the return of survivors and corpses of Gujarat residents who had faced a terrorist attack in Jammu and Kashmir. Modi also revealed that while informing him about the incident on a phone call, Azad had cried for so long.