Bengaluru: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday attacked former home minister and senior Congress leader P Chidambaram over his statement on autonomy in Jammu and Kashmir. Addressing a rally in Karnataka, the Prime Minister asked why Congress leaders were giving support to those who want “Azadi” in Jammu and Kashmir.
Without naming Chidambaram, the Prime Minister said, “Yesterday’s statement of a Congress leader on Kashmir clearly shows how the party feels on surgical strikes and bravery of our Army.”
Accusing the opposition party of changing its stand on the issue, PM Modi said that those who were in power till recently have now gone for u-turn and giving statements shamelessly. “They are echoing the voices of Azadi in Kashmir,” he added.
“Can people who are doing politics over death of our martyrs benefit the country?” said Modi.
He further said that the government will neither compromise with the security and unity of the country and nor will it allow others to do the same. “Congress is shamelessly using a language that is spoken by separatists and Pakistanis.”
The Prime Minister said that he was expecting that the Congress would learn from its defeat and try to fix things, but he was witnessing “irresponsible behaviour” by the opposition party.
He said, “It seems that the Congress has decided that it would not mend itself, otherwise people learn from their mistakes.”
This came even as the Congress distanced itself from the statement of Chidambaram on Kashmir. The party asserted that Kashmir is an integral part of India and will always remain so.
Chidambaram had on Saturday said that the government’s move to appoint an interlocutor for Jammu and Kashmir was a “diversionary tactic”, adding that the Azadi demand meant people demanded autonomy and that should be seriously examined.
Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley also attacked Chidambaram over the issue and demanded a clarification on the same by the Congress party.
"It's a serious issue whether the statement that has come from a prominent Congress leader is Congress' official stand or not? Congress should clarify immediately.
"The position Congress has taken with regard to 'Azadi' or autonomy to be given to Jammu and Kashmir, goes directly contrary to India's national interest," said Jaitley.