The Congress on Monday found itself under attack from various corners over remarks purportedly made by a senior leader here about the Army's action in the Pakistan Occupied Kashmir on the previous day.
The lone Congress member in the Rajya Sabha from the state, Akhilesh Prasad Singh, was posed with queries about the latest army operations at a press conference here on Sunday.
"I have no information about this (the operation). I am learning this from you people. If something of this sort has happened, it is fine", Singh had said at the press conference.
"But what is the objective? If the objective is only (gaining electoral victory in) Maharashtra and Haryana, then I have nothing to say", Singh said.
When asked whether he thought electoral gain was the motive. He replied evasively and cryptically "I do not know.
You people are talking about such a possibility. The country has, after all, always followed the policy of maintaining good relations with its neighbours".
Reports in a section of the media quoted Singh as having said that a "pattern" had emerged in which, under Prime Minister Narendra Modis rule, whenever there were crucial elections, the armed forces carried out a surgical strike.
However, BPCC media cell head H K Verma, who was present at Singh's press conference, termed these reports as "misleading".
When asked about Singh's statement, former Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi whose Hindustani Awam Morcha is a constituent of the Grand Alliance, which includes the Congress, said disapprovingly "even if electoral objectives were there, the action taken by the Army was in the interest of the nation".
Meanwhile, senior BJP leader and Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi came out with a scathing tweet in which he accused the Congress of having "insulted" the Army and charged the grand alliance with having "shown that terrorism is not an issue for them".
"The Congress is responsible for the controversial Article 370 remaining in place for 70 years and when Prime Minister Narendra Modi acted tough on the same, it opposed the move thereby helping Pakistan.
"The opposition party never took strong action against terrorism all the years it was in power but insulted the Army whenever, under the NDA rule, the Army conducted surgical strikes by raising questions over the same", Modi said.
"On October 20, when the Army carried yet another major operation, demolishing four terror camps in PoK, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi maintained a stony silence. The Congressmen in Bihar stooped to the extent of linking these operations to elections", the Deputy CM said in a veiled reference to the reported remarks of Akhilesh Prasad Singh.
"The Mahagathbandhan (grand alliance) leaders have shown that terrorism is not an issue for them. For us, (NDA) it is the nation that comes first and not elections", Modi added.