Questioning the “priorities” of Narendra Modi, the Congress on Thursday alleged that the Prime Minister continued shooting for a film in the Jim Corbett National Park for his “propaganda and publicity” even as 40 CRPF jawans were killed in a terror attack in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on February 14.
While referring to reports in a section of the media and providing a timeline of events of the day, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said the Prime Minister continued to “enjoy boat rides” with the camera crew even as the country was picking up the “pieces of the martyrs”.
Hitting out at the Prime Minister for neglecting his “raj dharma” (duty of governance), Surjewala told reporters, “The prime minister also knew about it, yet the PM, a person who claims himself to be a pseudo-nationalist, continues to shoot a film (for Discovery channel) for self-propagation in Corbett National Park in Ramnagar.”
The attack took place at 3:10 pm and Congress was the first party to condemn it at 5:15 pm, he claimed.
“The prime minister continues to eat chai, samosas at seven o’ clock at government expense in a PWD guest house when every single Indian household didn’t eat their food,” Surjewala said.
Raising a few questions on governance while criticising Modi for not initiating immediate action, the Congress leader said, “Can such conduct be expected from the prime minister of a country? The prime minister should have been chairing the cabinet committee on security immediately and should have taken action, instead of shooting films.”
Surjewala also said that while his party had shown restraint as directed by party chief Rahul Gandhi, however, it was important to highlight issues of such conduct that “insult martyrs”.
“The Congress party and the entire nation stands united with our armed forces as also our government in every step that they take in tackling Pakistan-sponsored terrorism. We are determined in that resolve even today,” he said.
Pointing out the “gross intelligence failure” of the government, Surjewala said questions must also be asked on the “priorities of a prime minister who on a sensitive time like this has gone on a foreign tour to South Korea instead of tackling terrorism”.
Responding to the Congress’s allegations, BJP president Amit Shah later said, “The Prime Minister works 18 hours in a day. Questioning his commitment towards the country’s security will not have any impact on people.”
BJP hits back
Addressing the media later in the day, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad hit back at the Congress saying the opposition party has shown its “true colours” after maintaining the “facade” of standing with the government and security forces following the terror strike.
“Was the Congress aware of the Pulwama attack? We were not aware,” the BJP leader said in a jibe at the opposition party.
Prasad also accused the Congress of seeking to weaken the morale of the armed forces at a time when the whole world is “firmly standing” with India.