Prime Minister Narendra Modi lacerated the opposition again today for its questions on the air strikes on a Jaish-e Mohammed terror camp. The opposition alliance he said, was working not for the country but Pakistan.
Over the last two days, the opposition has sharpened its attack on the government, questioning the impact of the air strikes in terms of casualty. Its questions have triggered a debate on the matter amid apparently conflicting claims from the BJP and the air force.
Hitting out at the opposition parties which sought proof of the Indian Air Force action, the Prime Minister said the air strike happened in Pakistan, but "some of those sitting in India were hit by it".
"These "mahamilavati" persons have become poster boys of Pakistan by terming it as an ambassador of peace. They are misleading people of the country and trying to demoralise our armed forces by asking for proofs of the IAF air strike," the Prime Minister said in his address at a political meeting in Dhar, Madhya Pradesh.
The opposition has kept up the pressure on the government in the days following the air strikes.
Following sceptical reports from the world media, Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, Mamata Banerjee and Akhilesh Yadav have asked for details of casualties. Congress leaders Kapil Sibal and Digvijaya Singh have asked for evidence. Ms Banerjee had said the nation has a "right to know" what happened after the Indian Air Force's strike.
BJP ally Shiv Sena seconded the demands, saying the people have the right to know about the casualties in the air strike.
The opposition has contended that the BJP is using the sacrifices of the soldiers for political gains. The Prime Minister has hit back, questioning if there was any election "when we conducted the surgical strike for the first time" after the 2016 terror strikes in Uri.
"We have been affected by terrorism for the last 40 years... I don't care for power. I am only concerned about my country's security," PM Modi had said at a meeting in Ahmedabad.
PM Modi, who promised in another rally that his government will pay back the terrorists "at every instance (chun chun ke)" also hit out at the Congress, saying the party "whose leaders shed tears on the death of terrorists" can't be expected to wipe out terrorism.
Senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh, who termed the Pulwama terror attack an "accident" in a tweet today, was not spared either. "He (Digvijaya Singh) also considers Osama Bin Laden a shantidoot (ambassador of peace). He is the same person who gave Pakistan a clean chit after the Mumbai terror attack and tried to mislead the investigation (into it)," the Prime Minister said.
The incensed opposition has struck back. In a tweet, Aam Aadmi Party leader Sanjay Sigh said: "Modiji has got so nervous due to the elections that he is calling leaders of his own country Pakistani "poster boy". Such ill-feeling for his opponents. You first fight in your country, later fight with Pakistan."
Get the latest election news, live updates and election schedule for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 on ndtv.com/elections. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram for updates from each of the 543 parliamentary seats for the 2019 Indian general elections.