Photo Credit: IANS
At a press conference at the BJP headquarters, Irani jumped to Jaitley’s defence, listing out several reasons why Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and his party had no case against the finance minister. The clincher was that the allegations were a “blasphemous and preposterous campaign bordering on political hysteria”. On social media, Irani’s use of the word “blasphemous” instantly diverted attention from the Kejriwal-Jaitley spat to the dictionary meaning of the word, and a side show ensued on Twitter.
Sagarika Ghose recorded the prominent reaction on Twitter, with the Oxford-educated journalist questioning Irani’s use of the word.
Irani, not one to shy away from an online spat with a journalist, immediately shot back and asked Ghose to confront her directly instead of speaking behind her back.
After presumably consulting the Merriam-Webster dictionary, Irani, who once claimed to hold a degree at Yale, took another swipe at Ghose.
There was a lull before another exchange between the two women that lasted a few minutes.
The spat heralded a field day for observers on Twitter. The debate eventually turned into one over Oxford vs Yale and Oxford Dictionary vs the rest. What was clear was that the controversy about Irani’s educational qualifications will continue to haunt her.