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Manohar Parrikar says no surgical strikes conducted in past; Congress accuses Defence Minister of lying, seeks apology

Congress on Wednesday criticised Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar for taking credits over surgical strikes carried out by the Indian Army.


Manohar Parrikar says no surgical strikes conducted in past; Congress accuses Defence Minister of lying, seeks apology
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New Delhi: Congress on Wednesday criticised Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar for taking credits over surgical strikes carried out by the Indian Army at Line of Control (LoC) and accused the Union Minister of misleading the public and undermining the army's sacrifices while politicising the issue for 'political mileage'.

Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala, who addressed a press conference today, said, "This entire distasteful commentary by the BJP, unending public felicitations by defence Minister Manohar Parrikar whether in Goa, Agra or Lucknow and converting national security into event management exercise to polish the image of Prime Minister Modi is extremely unfortunate.

The BJP has publicly devalued the sacrifices of our armed forces and tried to make political capital out of it," he said. 

Further training his guns on the Defence Minister for rejecting Congress' claims of surgical strikes in their regime, Surjewala said, "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?"

Taking a dig at the BJP for putting posters of PM Modi as Lord Rama in Uttar Pradesh, Surjewala said, "If army deserves full credit for the recent surgical strike, why are 'Avengers of Uri' posters depicting Modi ji as Lord Rama being plastered in poll-bound states?"

Surjewala further hit out at Union Minister Parrikar in a series of tweets today and said the latter 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 strikes, he got himself felicitated in Agra, Lucknow and Goa instead of our brave Indian Army."

No surgical strike in past: Parrikar

Earlier today, Parrikar had rejected claims made by Congress party that several surgical strikes were carried out against terrorist launch pads across the LoC under UPA regime and said that 'we (NDA govt) carried out first surgical strikes at LoC'. 

"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.

Explaining the concept, the Minister said such operations are carried out without official order or prior sanction of the government.

"It is done without the knowledge of anyone. A report is subsequently given," he said underlining the action is taken by the local commander for settling scores.

Parrikar made it clear that unlike earlier, this time it was a surgical strike because "decision was taken and conveyed" and the Army did the job well.

"This was an operation which clearly indicates the intent of the government and the nation," he said.

Parrikar said that if the government wanted to take political mileage out of this, he would have announced it rather than the Director General of Military Operations.

Lauding the Indian Army for carrying out surgical strikes across the LoC, the minister said, 'the credit for it must go to the Indian Army'.

"I don't mind sharing the credit, including on surgical strike, with every countryman because it is done by our armed forces and not by any political party.”

"We, in the government, and I, personally as the defence minister, are happy to share the credit with the Army, the 127 crore citizens and also those doubting Thomases," he said while addressing an audience at one of the two events he attended.

The minister said it will settle the nerves of many, in an apparent dig at the Opposition parties which have been accusing the Modi Government and the BJP of taking credit for the Army action for political gains.

(With Agency inputs)

From Zee News

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