New Delhi | Congress today demanded an apology from BJP chief Amit Shah accusing him of taking support of lies in gaining political mileage out of the sacrifices of armed forces and also questioned the Prime Minister if he agreed with his remarks.
The day saw a series of press conferences by Congress and BJP leaders, who traded charges over the surgical strikes accusing each other of insulting the bravery of armed forces.
In seeking to negate BJP’s claims that such cross-LoC surgical strikes have been carried out for the first time ever, Congress chief spokesman Randeep Surjewala played a video of an interview of former Army chief Gen Bikram Singh, who claimed that Indian Army had not once but many times conducted such strikes by crossing the LoC.
“Amit Shah has tried to mislead the country, spoke lies to the country, has insulted our armed forces and conspired to run down the sacrifices of the soldiers. The Congress party demands that Amit Shah apologises to the 125 crore people of the country as well as the Indian Army for trying to mislead the country before the media.
“In case he does not do so, we would like to ask the Prime Minister if he agrees with Amit Shah and Ravi Shankar Prasad, both of whom have done the act of grave insult to the Army’s bravery and valour,” he said.
Surjewala said the Congress wishes Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Shah and Manohar Parrikar had not sought to make political gains out of the bravery of soldiers and instead should have apologised to the country for the conduct of some of their party leaders and workers who have committed the mistake of doing so.
“But instead of apologising, Amit Shah went a step ahead,” he said, adding he should apologise for this.
Surjewala said BJP has done “the crime of colouring the bravery and valour of armed forces in BJP’s political colour”.
“Amit Shah has insulted and humiliated the Indian Army before the entire country by speaking a lie that it has done surgical strikes across LoC for the first time ever in these 68 years,” he said.
“Is former Army chief Gen Bikram Singh speaking a lie? Gen Singh has said that not once but many times, India has conducted surgical strikes after crossing the LoC but never politicised the issue. We have never tried to exploit the brave actions of the Army for votes,” the Congress leader said.
Earlier, Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the devotion to Rahul Gandhi is overriding Congress’s devotion to the country, targeting it over its reference to a now-closed criminal case involving Shah and accusing it of stooping to a low to defend its vice president.