Defence minister Manohar Parrikar’s visit to check on health of a local AAP leader’s father has sparked a row, with Congress saying on Tuesday that Parrikar should have been asked by AAP to “look into the burning issue of Kashmir”.
Parrikar’s visit to the house of AAP Goa secretary Walmiki Naik was disclosed to media on Sunday by Naik.
Congress said, “Naik should have advised the defence minister to rush to the headquarters to look into the burning issue of Kashmir and visit the grieving families of jawans who have lost their lives.”
Though Naik had denied any political links with Parrikar, during the press conference called by him on Sunday, he suddenly walked out without entertaining queries from media.
Congress’ Goa spokesperson Trajano D’Mello told reporters on Tuesday that “calling of the press conference by the AAP leader (on Sunday) to announce defence minister’s visit at his residence betrayed his (Naik’s) guilt. Moreover, he (Naik) refused to take questions from the press after making the announcement of the defence minister’s visit.”
Naik had clarified that Parrikar’s visit was limited to inquiring about health of his father Datta Naik, who, he said has cordial relation with the defence minister.
“I thank Parrikar for his visit today to my father and I urge the Narendra Modi government to take some lessons from Parrikar and learn to extend similar courtesy to the AAP government in Delhi,” Naik had said on Sunday.
Taking a dig, D’Mello said, “It’s shocking and surprising that visit of the defence minister to his (Naik’s) residence had to be announced or made public by calling a press conference.”
“Even if the announcement was not made, the news would have trickled to the media anyway. An explanation would have been understood had the media attributed motives to the visit,” he said.
The Congress leader alleged that Naik was asking Parrikar “to give the AAP government in Delhi, which is the creation of an illicit relationship among the BJP, RSS and AAP, honour and dignity”.
“He (Naik) should remember that an illicit relationship can never get an honour or dignity as that of a sanctified relationship,” D’Mello said.
AAP had already announced its intention to contest all 40 constituencies in next year’s Goa Assembly elections.
During his maiden rally in the coastal state, AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal had launched an acerbic attack on Parrikar, former CM of Goa, over the latter’s “frequent visits” to the coastal state.
However, in a veiled attack, Parrikar had equated AAP with “monsoon grass” and called the party as “looters of Delhi”.