Launching a scathing attack on the opposition Congress, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson Sambit Patra on Thursday accused the grand old party of echoing the lines of Pakistan at a time when the nation needs to stand united. In an apparent reference to the Congress, Patra said some political parties are "not standing with the country" for petty politics when nations across the world have backed India. The BJP leader also accused the Trinamool Congress (TMC) of politicising the "dastardly" terror attack in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district on February 14.
Coming down heavily on West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Patra said, "West Bengal CM has questioned the timing of the attack. Post the attack, she came up with statements like how did the attack take place right after the parliamentary session got over, who encouraged Pakistan to attack India; such statements are highly unfortunate".
Last week, Banerjee in a media briefing in Kolkata raised questions over the timing of Pulwama terror attack, asking whether the government wanted to go to war when Lok Sabha elections were round the corner. The Trinamool Congress chief also accused the government of ignoring intelligence reports and asked why the CRPF convoy was allowed to pass through the area despite repeated warning from the IB to sanitise the spot properly.
Patra was addressing a press conference in the national capital and further expressed his revulsion over Congress leader Manish Tewari's take on the Centre's decision to stop the water flow of three eastern rivers to Pakistan. "Yesterday we took a major decision of stopping water flow of three major rivers to Pakistan, but is sad that Manish Tewari who is the official spokesperson for the Congress party, had to speak out against it," he was quoted as saying.
On India's decision to restrict water flow to Pakistan, Tewari on Thursday said, "Nitin Gadkari says that we will stop the flow of all eastern rivers to Pakistan. Somebody needs to ask them, do dams get built in a day? The two projects he alludes to were cleared in 1999 and 2006".
Patra dismissed Congress president Rahul Gandhi's claim that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was "completely oblivious" to the Pulwama terror strike or "insensitive" as he "continued" with his prior engagements after the attack. Earlier in the day, the BJP had refuted Gandhi's claim that Modi attended a photo-shoot allegedly hours after the Pulwama attack on February 14 as "fake news", asserting that photographs were taken in the morning.
The BJP spokesperson also slammed veteran politician Shashi Tharoor for his tweet where he said forfeiting the World Cup match against Pakistan this year would not just cost two points, it would be worse than surrender.
Moving on to the Kulbhushan Jadhav case in the International Court of Justice (ICJ), Patra said, "Pakistani counsels are producing the pieces written by people in India as evidence against Jadhav". "A report was presented in Pakistan senate which is equivalent to our Parliamentary report, called Committee Report of the Whole. The report lays down strategies on how to deal with India. It states that India’s own fault lies in their own alienated population of Muslims, Christians, Dalits, Sikhs and Maoists", the BJP leader added.
In an apparent reference to a controversial media report on caste break-up of martyred CRPF jawans in Pulwama, Patra said, "What kind of articles the Congress is getting printed," adding that Pakistan sees "casteism" and "Hindu-Muslim" issues as "faultlines" to weaken India.
"Army belongs to the nation, it is much above the petty differences of castes and communities. It is very unfortunate that the language of our opposition parties is similar to that of the enemy nation," he went on to claim further.
To a question about Meghalaya Governor Tathagata Roy's tweet backing a boycott of "everything Kashmiri", Patra said Kashmir is an inseparable part of India and Kashmiris are like "brothers and sisters" to other Indians.