A widely-condemned tweet by Congress's youth wing Yuva Desh had featured a photo of PM Modi, Donald Trump and Theresa May. Blurbs in Hindi showed the PM mispronouncing "meme", then being corrected by Mr Trump. Ms May was shown saying, "you stick to selling tea."
Furious leaders of the BJP called it "deplorable" and said the offensive post reflects the Congress's elitist mindset.
Around 11 pm, Mr Rawal put out his "Bar-Wala" tweet, saying: "Our Chai-Wala is any day better than your Bar-Wala!"
By the time he deleted it an hour later, just after midnight, the post had 760 re-tweets and over 1,700 likes.
He said he had deleted the tweet as it was in bad taste.
Though Mr Rawal hadn't taken names or used any illustration, his post was widely seen as aimed at Congress president Sonia Gandhi, who worked as a waitress during her college years and so, is derided by her worst critics as a "bar-girl".
Deleted the tweet as it's in bad taste n I apologise for hurting feelings .- Paresh Rawal (@SirPareshRawal) November 21, 2017
Congress leader Randeep Surjewala had lashed out at the veteran actor's tweet and questioned whether "this is BJP's definition of respect for women."
Mr Surjewala had earlier posted a tweet condemning the meme against PM Modi. "INC strongly disapproves & rejects such humour through memes. Differences on policy and opinion aside, Congress culture imbibes respect for PM and all political opponents," he posted.
The BJP has targeted Sonia Gandhi as well as her son and soon-to-be Congress president Rahul Gandhi for the controversial meme. "Madam Sonia Gandhi & Mr Rahul Gandhi do u still believe that only u have a divine right to rule India?" commented Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Twitter.
PM Modi has often referred to his tea-selling years as a child in public speeches where he recounts his struggle before rising to the top post.