All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi on Monday supported Congress leader and Punjab Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu for hugging Pakistani Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa, while also using the opportunity to take a swipe at Prime Minister Modi.
Owaisi said, “Our beloved PM Modi also went to Pakistan to hug Pakistan Prime Minister to have biryani. He also hugged Pakistani Prime Minister.”
Further, blaming PM Narendra Modi for Congress President Rahul Gandhi’s hug to him, the AIMIM chief said, “In Parliament also, he (PM Modi) hugged people. Hugging is the new fashion.”
Earlier, even as Rahul Gandhi is silent on the hug controversy, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh slammed Sidhu for hugging Pakistan Army Chief, saying, “It was wrong for him to have shown affection towards the Pakistan Army Chief.”
“As far as attending the swearing-in ceremony is concerned, he went there in his personal capacity so it has nothing to do with us. About him being seated next to the PoK President, maybe he (Sidhu) didn't know who he was. But as far as hugging the Pakistan Army Chief is concerned I am not in its favour," the Punjab Chief Minister added while speaking to the media on Sunday.
Captain Amarinder Singh also said that Sidhu hugged Pakistan Army Chief even with the knowledge that “every day our jawans are getting martyred.”
"The fact is that the man should understand that our soldiers are being killed every day. My own regiment lost 1 Major and 2 jawans a few months ago and every day somebody is being shot and whether the man who pulled the trigger is to blame or the man who gives the order which is the chief, and the chief is General Bajwa," added the Punjab Chief Minister.
Meanwhile, when Republic TV cornered Sidhu over Amarinder Singh’s remark to him, he brazenly said, “When I have to reply I will do so. I will give a befitting reply. I will not reply because you are asking me to, I will reply when I want to.”
On further prodding by Republic TV’s reporter, Sidhu simply evaded the questions and drove away.
Earlier, while defending his gesture of hugging the Pakistan Army Chief, Sidhu had said, 'If someone comes and tells me that we share the tradition and I want to share a good news with you, and other 3 generals were also standing there. Bajwa sahab came to me and said that 'we were thinking of opening the route (Kartarpur) on the Birth Anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev'.”
A huge controversy erupted soon after Navjot Singh Sidhu’s decision to attend newly installed Pakistan PM Imran Khan’s swearing-in ceremony. His hugging the Pak Army Chief, Bajwa, there added fuel to the raging fire.
While reacting on the criticism he was facing for attending the oath ceremony, Sidhu had said, “I have not come here for doing politics. I know Imran sahab for the last 35 years. This message of friendship is for all. Those who are criticizing me, I am giving blessings to them. I am only a messenger for spreading peace I don’t want to swim in a red ocean. I think issues will be solved with talks only.”
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