Union Minister VK Singh on Thursday reacted to his party's leaders' controversial remark in which they have called the Army "Modiji ki sena" or PM's Army. The former chief of Army staff said the force belonged to the nation, not any individual. His comment came days after Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath was served a notice by the Election Commission for the comment.
"Army does not belong to an individual. Army only belongs to the nation. Where did Modi army come from?" he was quoted by news agency PTI as saying.
Yogi Adityanath had made the controversial remark at a rally in Ghaziabad on Sunday. "Congress people used to serve terrorists biryani, but "Modiji ki sena" (Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Army) gives them only bullets and bombs. That's the difference. Congress people use "ji" for terrorists like Masood Azhar, but under the leadership of PM Modi, the BJP government is breaking the backs of terrorists by striking their camps," he had said.
The leader was referring to the Indian Air Force strike in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir that had destroyed a Jaish-e-Mohammed camp.
The comment was not received well by opposition leaders and former army officials, who maintained that apolitical entities such as the armed forces should not be dragged into electoral politics. "It is shocking to hear the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister referring to the Indian Army as the 'Modi Sena'. Such blatant usurping of our beloved Indian Army is an insult and a humiliation," West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had said.
Former Navy chief Admiral L Ramdas (retired) also took strong objection to the comment and wrote to the Election Commission to look into possible violation of the poll code.
After his comment created a furore, the Election Commission sought an explanation from him on the matter, directing him to respond to the poll body's notice by April 5.
Yogi Adityanath's party colleague, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi was also caught on camera today, referring to the Army as "Modiji ki sena".
"Our missiles, our defence personnel annihilated the terrorists after storming their bastions. This is not an ordinary feat.But the problem is that the Congress, SP and BSP started demanding proof of the attack carried out by "Modiji ki sena")," he reportedly said in a rally in Rampur on Wednesday.
He denied having uttered the phrase.
With inputs from PTI