Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Amit Shah on Saturday hit back at Congress president Rahul Gandhi for his remarks that Prime Minister Narendra Modi used the 2016 surgical strike across the LoC as a political asset to win the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections and accused the later of insulting slain Army soldiers. Addressing a public rally in Phalodi town of Rajasthan’s Jodhpur district, Shah said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi took revenge for Army martyrs. Rahul Gandhi is saying that surgical strike was conducted to win Uttar Pradesh election. You insult the martyrs of the country. You could not even show some courage.”
The BJP leader said that today Army soldiers have a sense of pride knowing that their government is standing behind them rock solid.
Earlier in the day, Rahul Gandhi had accused the prime minister of politicising the 2016 surgical strike across the Line of Control (LoC) to win Assembly elections in the Uttar Pradesh.
During his interaction with professionals in Rajasthan’s Udaipur, the Congress chief claimed that the Army had conducted surgical strikes thrice during the Manmohan Singh government, however, he added, the military action was no used for political gains like Modi.
"Do you know that like Mr Narendra Modi's surgical strike, Manmohan Singh did that 3 times? When Army came to Mr Manmohan Singh and said we need to retaliate against Pakistan for what they've done they also said we wanted to be secret, for our own purposes," he said.
The Gandhi further alleged that Modi reached into the Army’s domain and turned a military action into a political asset to win the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections.
"Narendra Modi actually reached into Army's domain and shaped their surgical strike, he turned their surgical strike into a political asset when it actually was a military decision. What the Army would have liked was we'll do it, it's beneficial if nobody knows we did it. But Mr Modi didn't want that. He was fighting an election in UP and he was losing it," he added.