'Even if not me, there are other deserving candidates from Maharashtra in the Congress who should have been given the Rajya Sabha ticket.'
Actor-turned-politician Nagma Morarji on Monday expressed her displeasure over not getting a Rajya Sabha ticket from the Congress party.
Venting her angst, Nagma tweeted against the party after the Congress named Imran Pratapgarhi, a poet from Uttar Pradesh, as its Rajya Sabha candidate from Maharashtra.
Her reaction came soon after Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera too expressed disappointment over not getting an Rajya Sabha nomination.
"For the last 18 years I was promised I would get a Rajya Sabha ticket, but never got it whereas newcomers in the party have got it... I don't mind senior Congress members getting Rajya Sabha tickets, but those who are new to the party must not get it as it hurts and one feels what is happening is unjust," Nagma tells Syed Firdaus Ashraf/Rediff.com.
Are you hurt at not being nominated to the Rajya Sabha?
When deserving candidates don't get tickets, then obviously anyone will feel hurt.
India needs a party like the Congress and secularism instead of the divisive and hate politics which is going on.
There are certain things which are not just.
I have also written clearly that for the last 18 years I was promised I would get a Rajya Sabha ticket, but never got it whereas newcomers in the party have got it.
Pawan Khera also tweeted his dismay to which you have responded. Why do you think you and others did not get a ticket this time?
I don't know about other people.
I just saw his tweet and reacted.
I am talking about myself.
I have worked all over India for the Congress party in the last 18 years.
I have been a ground worker for the party and have been around in the party more than the time Imran Pratapgarhi has given.
Even in my professional field I have achieved more than Imran.
I have worked in films of nine different languages and I am popular across India.
Here, Imran who is not from Maharashtra, has been given a ticket from the state whereas I, who belongs to this state, am not given (a ticket).
Even if not me, there are other deserving candidates from Maharashtra in the Congress who should have been given the Rajya Sabha ticket.
It is humiliating.
Were you promised any future role in the party at the Chintan Shivir in Udaipur?
It was a different topic altogether.
It was a shivir for a collective group on each topic in which I was in the group on education, employment and youth.
On how to deal with these issues inside the party and outside the party.
I don't mind senior Congress members getting Rajya Sabha tickets, but those who are new to the party must not get it as it hurts and one feels what is happening is unjust.
I can understand the Congress party is not doing so well electorally at this moment, but India needs the Congress and its secularism.
This divisive ruling regime is spreading hate, but that does not mean that I should keep quiet and get humiliated.
One has to voice his or her opinion.
I feel a person from Maharashtra should have been given a ticket to the Rajya Sabha, and I fit that role.
My credentials are from here and I have worked for the party for the last 18 years.
I was a more deserving candidate than Imran Pratapgarhi.
Earlier too Rekhaji was given a Rajya Sabha ticket, but she did not voice her opinion about the film fraternity in the House.
Rekhaji was given a Rajya Sabha ticket in the artists list.
I am also an artist.
They could have given me.
Tell me which artist works for the party once s/he joins it?
Unlike others I have worked hard for the party.
I am not happy about this ticket issue because now I am feeling humiliated.
Imran Pratapgarhi is said to be close to the Gandhis, especially Priyanka Gandhi.
I don't want to comment on that.
I am only talking about what I feel.
Do you feel such decisions hurt the morale of the Congress party if outsiders get tickets?
Everybody is a worker in the Congress party.
He is newly joined and I am an older worker of the party.
I was more befitting for this role.
Will you be a part of the Congress party in the future?
I always wanted to serve the people.
I always wanted to work and spread a sense of togetherness.
I don't see how I could not have fit in this role in the Rajya Sabha.
Do you feel betrayed?
Betrayal is not the right word.
I just feel this decision was not just.