I have a degree from Yale University, says Smriti Irani

I have a degree from Yale University, says Smriti Irani

Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Smriti Irani has claimed that she has “a degree” from the prestigious Yale University of the United States, giving a fresh twist to a controversy over her educational qualification.

“In that kitty of mine, where people call me ‘Anpad’ (illiterate), I do have a degree from Yale as well, which I can bring out and show how Yale celebrated my leadership capacity,” PTI quoted her as saying at a summit organised by a media group on Saturday.

“Extraneous circumstances are being created so that I deviate my concentration from what my goals are,” she said, reiterating that she should be judged by her work as a minister.

Though the HRD Minister asserted that she had a degree from Yale University, she did not specify what kind of degree she received from the university. As the social media went viral with comments on the minister’s statement, Congress spokesperson Priyanka Chaturvedi posted on her Twitter account a link of a media report of 2013 which stated that a group of 11 Indian MPs including Irani underwent a crash course at the Yale University.

These MPs came to the Yale University campus in New Haven, Connecticut on June 19 to complete a six-day leadership program with Yale faculty. The 2013 program was held in a new partnership with the Governance and Public Policy Initiative of the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi.

“And our HRD minister forgot to mention her Yale degree in her affidavit this time. But all her affidavits have had different degrees, sigh,” Chaturvedi tweeted.

She, however, immediately clarified posting another tweet, “It’s NOT about the need of educational qualifications for a minister. It’s about her honesty, integrity and truthfulness.”

Smriti landed in a controversy over her educational qualification soon after she took oath as Union Minister with the Congress alleging discrepancies in the poll affidavits filed by her in 2004 and 2014 Lok Sabha elections. When she was asked at the summit to clarify which of the two affidavits were real, she said, “Please go and file a PIL against me in court, I shall give you your answer in court to settle this once and for all.”

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