Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath today went full throttle in his attack on the Congress accusing the party of doing "divisive politics". On the 10th anniversary of the Mumbai terror attacks, the Uttar Pradesh chief minister said that his party has been gunning down terrorists while the Congress fed them biryani during their rule.
On November 26, 2008, 10 heavily-armed terrorists had sailed into Mumbai from Karachi and ran rampage through the city, killing 166 and wounding over 300. They spent the next 72 hours targeting the city's landmarks, including Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, the Oberoi Trident, the Taj Hotel, Leopold Cafe, Cama Hospital, a Jewish community centre and carried out coordinated shooting and bombing attacks.
Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, a member of Pakistan's Lashkar-e-Taiba, was the only gunman captured alive and hanged in 2012.
During an election rally in Rajasthan's Makrana, Yogi Adityanath blamed the Congress for the alleged rise in terrorism in the country, and said, "Congress has done divisive politics. As a result of that, terrorism was at its peak in the country (during Congress rule). Today, you can see that the terrorists who were fed with biryani by the Congress are now being gunned down by us."
The priest-turned-politician was referring to reports that Ajmal Kasab was allegedly provided "mutton biryani" in jail on his demand.
However, public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam later accepted that it was a lie "concocted" to counter an "emotional wave" which was being created in Kasab's favour.
"Kasab neither asked for biryani nor it was served by the government. I concocted it just to break an emotional atmosphere which was taking shape in favour of Kasab during the trial of the case," Mr Nikam had told reporters.
Earlier today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also lambasted the Congress and its chief Rahul Gandhi at an election rally in Rajasthan's Bhilwara, for demanding proof of the 2016 surgical strikes in Pakistan.
"When the Army carried out the surgical strike going into the enemy territory, the whole country felt proud, but the Congress raised questions and demanded video proof," said PM Modi.
"Will commandos carry cameras to provide proof?" he said.
The prime minister also accused the Congress of trying to manipulate the Mumbai attacks to win elections in Rajasthan. "Delhi was ruled by a madam... the world was shaken but the Congress was playing how-to-win-the-election game," PM Modi said.
At that time, they preached patriotism, PM Modi said. "What they (Congress leaders) said then, I still remember. They said it is a war, Pakistan has attacked India. And these people (the opposition) are doing politics."
He said that during the NDA rule, terror attacks have been restricted to Jammu and Kashmir.
"Remember those times when terror attacks took place across the country. We have fought against terrorism in such a way that they are unable to move out of Kashmir as they see their death," he said.
After terrorism, PM Modi counted Maoism among the biggest threats to development.
"Those Maoists killed the brave in Chhattisgarh and Congress leaders are describing them as revolutionaries. Should those who kill innocents be called revolutionaries?" he asked.
The Congress gave it back in the same currency.
The party's chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala alleged that "one person who played despicable politics during the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack was Shri Narendra Modi".
"Even as our soldiers fought inside and the then chief minister of Gujarat was standing outside at one of the attack sites, addressing the media and blaming the then UPA government for the attack," he alleged.
The Congress leader also alleged that the prime minister and the BJP have always used the "blood and sacrifice of our jawans as a tool to garner votes".
"Politicising of national security and sacrifice of our jawans is intrinsic to BJP. Modi government has compromised our national security and in the last four and a half years. Lack of political action and policy has led to a disquiet border and an alarming internal security situation," Mr Surjewala claimed.
He also pointed out that Modi government did not celebrate the first anniversary of the surgical strike and began "celebrations only in the second year".
Mr Surjewala also blamed the centre for a "500 per cent increase in ceasefire violations by Pakistan since May 2014".
"Is it not true that 16 major terror attacks have taken place on our security installations? Is it not true our jawans were beheaded and bodies mutilated by Pakistan, as Modi government remained a mute spectator? Where was the '56-inch chest' when Pakistan committed more than 3,000 ceasefire violations along the Line of Control?" he attacked.