NEW DELHI: Kerala Congress MP Shashi Tharoor’s praise for former Pakistan President, who died on Sunday after a prolonged illness, has created a bitter political storm in the country, with the ruling BJP saying it has exposed the true colour of the main opposition party. Hitting out at Tharoor, BJP spokesperson Shehzad Poonawalla said, “Pervez Musharraf architect of Kargil, dictator, accused of heinous crimes who considered Taliban & Osama as ‘brothers’ & ‘heroes’ who refused to even take back bodies of his own dead soldiers is being hailed by Congress! Are you surprised? Again, Congress ki pak parasti!”
Pervez Musharraf- architect of Kargil, dictator, accused of heinous crimes – who considered Taliban & Osama as “brothers” & “heroes” – who refused to even take back bodies of his own dead soldiers is being hailed by Congress! Are you surprised? Again, Congress ki pak parasti! 1/2 pic.twitter.com/I7NnLRRUZM— Shehzad Jai Hind (@Shehzad_Ind) February 5, 2023
“Once upon a time Musharraf had hailed Rahul Gandhi as a gentleman perhaps that endears Congress to Musharraf??” he said. “From 370 to Surgical Strike to doubting Balakote Congress echoed Pak line & hails Musharraf but called our own chief ‘Sadak Ka Gunda’.This is Congress!!” Poonawalla said.
Parvez Musharraf who had hailed Osama Bin Laden & Taliban had sung praises of Rahul Gandhi too – called him a gentleman and pledged his support to him!!
Perhaps this is the reason why Shashi Tharoor is eulogising the architect of Kargil & a backer of terrorism!! Sigh https://t.co/nhE1emXqV8 pic.twitter.com/tYRt7UxEFH— Shehzad Jai Hind (@Shehzad_Ind) February 5, 2023
In another tweet, the BJP leader shared an old video of Musharraf talking about his son being invited by Rahul Gandhi and Musharraf’s wife, brother and son being invited for lunch by former prime minister Manmohan Singh when they were on a Delhi visit, during his tenure as the Pakistan president.
BJP spokesperson Gaurav Bhatia also slammed Tharoor saying, “Sharm ek Sheikh to Sharm Kar Shashi. Misplaced priorities of a former external affairs minister.” “Congress eulogising a person who attacked our country during Kargil. Indians revere martyrs Capt Vikram Batra, Lt Manoj Pandey, Grn Yogendra Yadav, Rifleman Sanjay Kumar not Pervez,” he said.
In response to the criticism by BJP leaders, Tharoor on Monday tweeted, “I was raised in an India where you are expected to speak kindly of people when they die.” “Musharraf was an implacable enemy & was responsible for Kargil but he did work for peace with India, in his own interest, 2002-7. He was no friend, but he saw strategic benefit in peace, as did we,” the Congress leader said.
I was raised in an India where you are expected to speak kindly of people when they die. Musharraf was an implacable enemy &was responsible for Kargil but he did work for peace w/India, in his own interest, 2002-7. He was no friend but he saw strategic benefit in peace,as did we.
— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) February 5, 2023
Tharoor had on Sunday condoled the demise of the former Pakistan military ruler stating that “once an implacable foe of India, he became a real force for peace between 2002-2007.”`Pervez Musharraf, Former Pakistani President, Dies of Rare Disease`: once an implacable foe of India, he became a real force for peace 2002-2007,” Tharoor said in a tweet.
“I met him annually in those days at the @un & found him smart, engaging & clear in his strategic thinking. RIP,” the former minister of state for external affairs said. Tharoor`s post brought fierce criticism from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party. Union Minister Rajeev Chandrashekhar hit out at Tharoor saying his post “best describes Cong” (Congress).
Tagging Tharoor’s earlier tweets, Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar slammed the grand old party for finding peace in a person who “inflicted terror a backstabbing conflict and tortured our soldiers in violation of every International law”.
“Nothing like a proper military thrashing for Fatcat Pak Dictator Generals to become a “force for peace” and develop “clear strategic thinking”. Notwithstanding many lives lost n international laws violated and harm caused all around, these Generals will have their admiring fans in India (sic),” the Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology, Rajeev Chandrasekhar wrote in his tweet.
General Musharraf passed away on Sunday at American Hospital in UAE after a prolonged illness. He was suffering from amyloidosis, a rare disease caused by a build-up of an abnormal protein called amyloid in organs and tissues throughout the body, according to his family.
Musharraf was born on August 11, 1943, in Delhi. He assumed the post of Chief Executive after imposing martial law in the country in 1999 and served as the president of Pakistan from 2001 to 2008. In her condolence message, former J&K chief minister and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti said Musharraf was perhaps the only Pakistani general who genuinely tried to address the Kashmir issue.