BJP hits out at INC president for misusing courtesy visit to Goa CM for political gains
NEW DELHI: Bhartiya Janata Party leaders, led by party president Amit Shah and Union Minister Smriti Irani, on Wednesday came out all guns blazing against Rahul Gandhi for misusing his courtesy visit to ailing Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar at the Assembly Complex on Tuesday to drag him into the Rafale controversy.
Parrikar, who is battling pancreatic cancer for months, shot back a two-page letter, vetted by Amit Shah, to Gandhi for letting him down for ‘petty political gains’. The letter was released by the BJP headquarters to scotch Rahul’s claim on Wednesday at a Youth Congress gathering that Parrikar was kept in the dark by PM Modi about the Rafale deal despite he then being the Defence Minister.
“In the 05 minutes you spent with me, neither did you mention anything about Rafale, nor did we discuss anything about/related to it. Nothing whatsoever about Rafale was even mentioned in your meeting with me,” Parrikar asserted in the letter.
Parrikar also made it clear that he has said it before and reiterates that the fighter aircraft are procured “following all stated procedures keeping national security as top priority”.
“Kindly do not use your visit to an ailing person to feed political opportunism,” Parrikar wrote, “hoping that you would put out the truth.”
His letter was followed up by Shah with a caustic remark: “Dear Rahul Gandhi, you have shown how insensitive you are by lying in the name of a person fighting a disease. The people of India are disgusted by your reckless behaviour. In his trademark style, @manoharparrikar ji sets the record straight.”
Parrikar also hit back at Goa Congress President Girish Chodankar, who made a shocking comment after his meeting with Gandhi, that the Goa CM should come back to “hosh” (consciousness) before speaking about “josh” (passion).
After presenting Goa’s budget in the short Assembly session on Wednesday, he said he was in full “hosh” and would serve Goa and India until his last breath despite his debilitating health.
“I am presenting the budget in josh. The josh that is too high, very high, and fully in hosh,” Parrikar said.
The Goa Congress president had picked up ‘josh’ to chide Parrikar for his poor health from his speech while inaugurating the third bridge across the River Mandovi on Sunday. Parrikar had started his speech with Bollywood actor Vicky Kaushal’s punchline from the film Uri: The Surgical Strike to ask “How’s the josh?” The crowd had roared in response: “High sir”.