Congress’ Pitroda Questions Balakot Airstrikes, PM Modi Hits Back

Pitroda said that Congress could have “sent planes” after the Mumbai attacks but that it was “not right approach.”

2 min read

Video Editor: Ashutosh Bhardwaj

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday, 22 March, hit out at the Opposition after Indian Overseas Congress chief Sam Pitroda questioned the Indian government’s response to the Pulwama terror attack.

Speaking to news agency ANI, Pitroda said that the Congress-led UPA could have "sent planes" after the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, but that it was "not right approach."

“Don’t know much about attacks, it happens all the time. After the Mumbai attacks, we could have then reacted and just sent our planes but that is not the right approach. According to me, that’s not how you deal with the world,” Pitroda said.

Reacting to Pitroda’s statement, the prime minister said that Congress’ “loyal courtier” has admitted to “what the nation already knew.”

“We will answer terrorists in a language they understand and with interest,” the prime minister wrote on Twitter.

Echoing similar sentiments, BJP President attacked the Opposition saying the difference between the saffron party and them is “clear.”

"They suspect our army, we are proud of our army... Their heart beats for terrorists, ours beats for the Tiranga," Shah said.

Pitroda Issues Clarification

Moments after the prime minister reacted, Pitroda issued a statement clarifying that he was not talking on behalf of the party.

“I don’t understand what is the controversy here, I am baffled at the response. Shows how people react to trivial matters in India. It is a totally trivial matter. A citizen is just asking a question.”
Sam Pitroda to ANI

Pitroda’s Opinion Isn’t Party’s Opinion: Congress

Reacting to Pitroda’s statement on Balakot strikes made earlier on Friday morning, Congress’ Spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said that an individual’s opinion does not reflect the party’s opinion.

“Expression of an individual is not the opinion of the party. Balakot air strikes is a show of strength. No one has the right to question it,” Surjewala said in a media address.

He added that the Pulwama attack on India’s 40 CRPF jawans was the biggest intelligence failure of the PM Modi-led government.

“Pakistan is a state that harbours terror and the entire world should condemn the terror state,” he said.

‘Opposition Insults India’s Forces’: Modi

Responding to Pitroda’s statement that said that he needed clarity on whether India “really killed” 300 people, Modi said that the Opposition “insulted our forces” with the questioning.

"Eight people (26/11 terrorists) come and do something, you don't jump on entire nation (Pakistan). Naive to assume that just because some people came here and attacked, every citizen of that nation is to be blamed. I don't believe in that way," Pitroda added.

Union Minister Smriti Irani hit back saying that Pitroda’s statement showed that the Congress’ sympathies with Pakistan’s stand has been exposed.

Union minister Arun Jaitley also hit out at Pitroda saying that no other country except for Pakistan felt the way he did.

“He believes what we did was wrong. No country in the world said this, not even the OIC (Organisation of Islamic Cooperation) said this. Only Pakistan was of this view. Unfortunate such people are ideologues of a political party,” said Pitroda.

(With inputs from ANI)

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Topics:  Sam Pitroda 

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