Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Monday demanded Prime Minister Narendra Modi to apologise for allegedly politicising the armed forces and using the "blood" of the army while campaigning.
"Narendra Modiji, your people said the army was your personal property. Narendra Modiji, the Army does not belong to you. It belongs to the youth, sisters, and mothers of Bhiwani. Their blood is in the army. When someone gets killed in the army, they bleed not you, Narendra Modi," Mr Gandhi said in a rally in Haryana's Bhiwani.
"Modiji, you apologise to the country and tell the countrymen that the army is not yours. Admit that you politicise and use the blood of the army in politics. When a serviceman dies, they give up their life for India, not for the political strategy of the Prime Minister," Mr Gandhi added.
The Congress chief vowed to never politicise the armed forces for electoral gains in his life.
He went on to accuse PM Modi of diverting people's attention from his government's "failures" by citing Pakistan and the services of the armed forces.
"Modiji talks about the forces. He talks about other countries. He cannot talk about unemployment, farmers issues, and Rs 15 lakh he promised to the people," he claimed.
Mr Gandhi reiterated his promise to provide Rs 72,000 per year to the poor under Congress's flagship Nyayntam Aay Yojna (NYAY) if his party comes to power in the ongoing elections.
He also promised to introduce a dedicated budget for the farming sector. "This year, there would be two budget -- national budget and farmers budget. And farmers'' budget will be presented first," he said.
Bhiwani will go to polls in the sixth phase of general elections on May 12. Counting of votes will take place on May 23.
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