Sambit Patra while addressing the media at BJP head office, New Delhi, attacked Congress chief Rahul Gandhi over cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu’s act of hugging Pakistan Army Chief while his visit to Pakistan.
Slamming Sidhu’s various statements from his press conference, BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said that everyone wants peace and prosperity but at whose behest does the Punjab minister address a press conference on the issue against the statement of his chief minister. Sambit Patra said Navjot singh Sidhu has implicated India by hugging the Pakistan Army chief and instead of explaining his act he is lecturing us over peace. The BJP leader came down hard of Congress party and especially Congress chief Rahul Gandhi demanding him to answer as to why his party members hurt Indian sentiment by ‘hugging Pakistan Army Chief’.
“Rahul Gandhi ji, you are out of power and should accept this graciously. You cannot run a parallel government. We want an answer from the Congress president,” Patra said. “So for Congress, our Army Chief is ‘sadak ke gunde’ and Pakistan Army Chief is ‘sone de munde’?” he added.
“Have you opened a Pakistan desk in India? Sidhu is trying to preach 125 crore how India has a ‘chhota dil’. What is happening? I am asking this not as BJP spokesperson but as a normal Indian who is annoyed today by the appalling behaviour of your party,” Patra said launching a blistering attack on Rahul Gandhi and the Congress.
All the piercing statements came soon after cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu’s press conference in which he justified his ‘hugplomacy’.
The Punjab minister, associated with Congress party, held a press conference to clear the air revolving around the ongoing controversy over Sidhu’s hug to the Pakistan Army official. The congress leader defended his act of embracing Pakistan Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa, by calling it ‘hug in an emotional moment’. Sudhu said he went to Pakistan with government approval and said he did not go there for any political gain. Saying that peace talks are very important, Congress leader clarified that Bajwa and he met barely for a minute before the oath-taking ceremony had begun. The Punjab minister said that he cannot show his back if someone offers their hand of friendship.
The Punjab minister further defended himself by saying that foreign minister Sushma Swaraj had called him up to say that he got all the clearances to visit Pakistan. “I received an invitation 10 times. Then I sought permission from the Indian government, I didn’t get the permission initially and was waiting. Two days later, the Pakistan government gave me a visa,” Sidhu said. The former cricketer further cited PM Modi and former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s visit to Pakistan.