Congress MP Manish Tewari on Monday slammed Punjab Congress Chief Navjot Singh Sidhu’s advisors Dr Pyare Lal Garg and Malwinder Singh Mali for their comments on “sensitive national issues” like Kashmir and Pakistan.
Speaking to ANI, Mr Tewari said that the unanimous resolution of Parliament of India in 1994 that was reiterated in 2012 declared Jammu and Kashmir as an integral part of India and the only unfinished business of Partition was to reclaim the areas occupied illegally by Pakistan like Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) and northern areas.
“If someone is questioning this resolution, forget about the party, do such people even have the right to stay in the country?” he asked.
Mr Tewari’s comments came in response to reported remarks of Dr Pyare Lal Garg questioning Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh’s criticism of Pakistan as well as the earlier controversial statement of Malwinder Singh Mali on Kashmir. Both of them were recently appointed by Mr Sidhu as his advisors.
Mr Tewari further said that dissent has certain limits and such comments manifest serious questions. “How can you support Pakistan- the country that sends arms, drugs and drones in Punjab? Many people from Congress sacrificed their lives in the fight against terrorism in Punjab and Kashmir. Such statements are a mockery of their martyrdom,” he said.
He further requested Congress General Secretary in charge of Punjab Congress Harish Rawat to take actions against such people that make comments against India’s national interests.
Earlier in the day, Congress leader Sandeep Dikshit also condemned Nr Sidhu’s advisor Malwinder Singh Mali for posting a controversial sketch of late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi saying that such actions were objectionable. He also advised Mr Sidhu to distance himself from such advisors.
“You should not keep any political relations with such people. I have no objection if you want to have personal relations with them but such people cannot be a part of Congress,” he said.
He added that Mr Sidhu should take responsibility for his advisors and reprimand them for their comments on issues they don’t understand.
Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) leader Daljit Singh Cheema also reacted to the poster controversy and took a dig at Mr Sidhu.
“Who extended a hand of friendship towards Pakistan Prime Minister when the nation was against Pakistan? Who hugged Pakistan Army Chief? Navjot Singh Sidhu. When he’s like that, why complain about his advisors,” he said.
Meanwhile, Punjab CM Amrinder Singh on Sunday took a strong exception to the recent statements of Mr Sidhu’s advisors and slammed them for their comments that are “potentially dangerous to the peace and stability of the state and the country”.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)