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Last Updated: Tuesday, 15 March, 2005, 11:15 GMT
Scots MPs slam Paxman 'Raj' jibe
Jeremy Paxman
MPs have called Jeremy Paxman's comments "insulting"
Twenty MPs have signed a Commons motion condemning the BBC Newsnight presenter Jeremy Paxman for saying a "a sort of Scottish Raj" was running the UK.

Mr Paxman likened the dominance of Scots at Westminster to past British rule in India.

His remarks follow the accusation by Health Secretary John Reid that the presenter insulted him because of his Glaswegian accent.

MPs have called on the BBC's senior management to apologise.

The group of MPs, led by Labour's Jim Sheridan, Iain Luke and Brian Donohoe, describe Mr Paxman's comments at the weekend as "insulting, irresponsible, divisive and snobbish".

'Doolally' comment

The Sunday Times reported that Mr Paxman had said he admired the health secretary's "knowledge" and "strength of character," but could not understand why Dr Reid had gone "doolally" when he called him an "attack dog".

He said it was "extremely bizarre" that certain Scots had a "chip on their shoulder" about their nationality.

The Newsnight frontman said: "I mean down here we live under a sort of Scottish Raj... I don't see why there is any reason for them to feel chippy.

"Do we complain about it? No we don't. I think it's absurd. I don't understand wherein lies this angst."

Chancellor Gordon Brown and Transport Secretary Alistair Darling are other key members of the current cabinet who are Scottish.

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