Congress accuses Manohar Parrikar of misleading people, undermining army's sacrifices

New Delhi: Congress on Wednesday shot back at Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar for denying that any surgical strike was carried out during the UPA's tenure and accused him of misleading the public and undermining the army's sacrifices while indulging in "blatant politicisation" of the issue.

"Mr Parrikar, Indian Army deserves all credit but why mislead the people and undermine army's sacrifices by denying earlier surgical strikes? "Operation Ginger in 2011 was a large-scale surgical strike. Why is Manohar Parrikar quiet on army's valour? Is (it) not blatant politicisation?" Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala asked.

He asked "if army deserves full credit (for the recent surgical strike), why are 'avengers of Uri' posters depicting Modiji as Lord Rama being plastered in poll-bound states?" Hitting out Parrikar in a series of tweets, Surjewala said he is indulging in "ultimate political hypocrisy". "The ultimate political hypocrisy; post surgical strike, Modi Sarkar cut disability pensions for 'combat injury' to half.

"Is Modi Govt giving credit to Army by denying OROP, Seventh Pay Commission recommendations, by refusing to acknowledge and honor commitments? (sic)" he asked. The Congress leader said RSS and BJP chief Amit Shah have publicly stated that surgical strikes will be their key electoral strategy. "Forked tongue, Mr Parrikar?" he asked.

Surjewala also said that while Defence Minister Parrikar credits army for surgical strike, "no wonder he got himself felicitated in Agra, Lucknow and Goa instead of our brave army." Parrikar earlier on Wednesday rejected claims that surgical strikes were undertaken during the UPA regime and asserted that a "major" share of credit for the army action last month goes to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

"I have been the Defence Minister for two years. From whatever I have known, there is no surgical strike from previous years. What they are quoting are actions taken by border action teams. These are common actions across the globe and by the Indian army," he said.

Speaking at two different events in Mumbai, he said all the 127 crore people of India, including "doubting Thomases", and the army share and deserve credit for the operation as it was done by the armed forces and not by any political party. At the same time, he said that "major share" of credit does go to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the government for decision-making and planning.

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Updated Date: Oct 12, 2016 18:22:22 IST