Rahul Gandhi stirs controversy, asks 'who benefitted the most from Pulwama attack'
Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi has created a political storm by raising three questions on the Pulwama terror attack in which 40 CRPF personnel were martyred last year. The BJP has hit back at the Gandhi scion, saying he has a "corrupt soul".
Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi could land into a political storm which is expected to escalate as the day progresses. He has raised three questions around the Pulwama terror attack which was carried out last year on this day.
At least 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CPRF) personnel were killed when a Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) terrorist drove an explosive-laden SUV into a convoy of vehicles carrying paramilitary troops on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway.
Since then, India has been blaming Pakistan for harbouring the terror outfit responsible for the attack.
On the day when the country is paying homage to its brave, Rahul Gandhi chose to raise three pertinent questions around the attacks.
1. Who benefitted the most from the attack?
2. What is the outcome of the inquiry into the attack?
3. Who in the BJP government has yet been held accountable for the security lapses that allowed the attack?
The timing of these questions looks like a political blunder committed by the Congress party. Its leadership is running a sustained campaign on social media to back Rahul Gandhi's questions.
Randeep Surjewala, a Congress spokesperson, added fuel to the controversy by asking by adding five more questions to the list. He asked "who brought the 350 kg IED" and "why were intelligence reports of attack ignored".
Entire Nation pays homage to martyrs of #Pulwama !— Randeep Singh Surjewala (@rssurjewala) February 14, 2020
1. Why is the report of Pulwama attack not being made public?
2. Who is accountable?
3. Who brought the 350 Kgs IED?
4. Why were intelligence reports of attack ignored?
5. Did Devinder Singh have any role? pic.twitter.com/0bG0eWu0Id
Meanwhile, Zulfiquar Hasan -- Special CRPF DG J&K Zone (Pulwama) -- said that the conspirators of the heinous attack were neutralized a few months after the incident.
Zulfiquar Hasan, Special CRPF DG J&K Zone, in Pulwama: Investigation is being done by the National Investigation Agency. It is proceeding in the right direction. As far as I know, they have made huge progress. We've tried our best to take care of martyrs' families. #PulwamaAttack https://t.co/XXhstivAKl— ANI (@ANI) February 14, 2020
Following Rahul Gandhi's remarks, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) slammed the Congress party and its former president. The saffron party's national spokesperson said that Pulwama was a "dastardly attack" and Rahul Gandhi's tweet is a "dastardly comment".
Sambit Patra, training his guns at Gandhi, asked: "Can you (Gandhi) think beyond benefits?"
The BJP spokesperson said the "Gandhi family can never think beyond benefits" and that their "souls are also corrupt".
The Pulwama terror attack was carried out by the Pakistan-based JeM on February 14, 2019. Later, it was reported that there were intelligence inputs about a possible attack and the authorities were sent an alert.
India responded to the Pulwama terror attack by carrying out airstrikes in Pakistan occupied Kashmir's Balakot region. This brought the two South Asian neighbours to the brink of war. Bilateral ties took a nosedive and the tense situation was de-escalated only after the intervention and persuasion by the international community.
A day after the Pulwama attack, Rahul Gandhi had extended his party's complete support to the Narendra Modi government. He held a press conference along with former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and said, "the entire opposition will stand together with our jawans and our government".
However, in the run-up to the general elections, the BJP leaders were accused of making electoral pitch based on the Pulwama attack and Balakot airstrikes. Back then, the Congress party had registered a strong opposition for politicising martyrdom and had accused the BJP of trying to get electoral dividends.
The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance gained in the 2019 general election opinion polls after the Pulwama-Balakot airstrikes and also due to the introduction of a popular budget that year.