Bhubaneswar: A day after bragging that he is a ‘VIP’ after video footage showed his personal security officer (PSO) tying his shoelaces during Independence day celebrations in Keonjhar, Odisha MSME minister Yogendra Behera on Tuesday embarked on some belated damage control, assuming the role of a ‘fatherly figure’ to the PSO he had dismissed as a ‘mere security officer’ just 24 hours ago.
In an interview to news agency ANI, Behera said, “My left leg is in a lot of pain. I can’t bend. Hence, the PSO volunteered to tie my shoelaces. He is like my son.”
“In fact I have been consulting a doctor in AIIMS in Delhi, can show you prescriptions,” the minister volunteered.
ANI has published statements of the minister in its twitter handle. (See Screenshot)
But what has surprised all is the ‘toned down’ statement of the Loisinga MLA, who in a reply to a question asked by newsmen yesterday, had dubbed the PSO ‘a mere security officer’.
“I had not put on the shoes…I am a VIP. I have hoisted the flag and he (PSO) has not,” Behera had said when media persons enquired about the incident.
It is obvious that the minister’s clarification about the incident mentioning his illness came only after a media hue and cry showing him in poor light.
Yesterday the minister’s PSO was caught tying his shoelaces during the Independence day celebration in Keonjhar. Behera was the chief guest on the occasion and hoisted the national flag in the presence of thousands of people.