Citing excerpts of the book, the BJP on Tuesday alleged that the then UPA government put the national security at stake. In response, Tewari tweeted that he was rather "amused" at the criticisms.
Congress leader Manish Tewari’s new book has triggered a political slugfest as its excerpts seem to suggest that the former Union minister was unhappy with the reaction of the then UPA government after the 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes and was in favour of a tougher reaction.
In the book titled ‘10 Flashpoints: 20 years-National Security Situations That Impacted India’ that is set to be released on December 2, Tewari has looked back at the security situations that have impacted India in the last two decades.
The section, which was shared by Tewari, said the book “objectively delves into every salient national security challenge India has faced in the past two decades”.
In the book, he writes, “For a state that has no compunctions in brutally slaughtering hundreds of innocent people, restraint is not a sign of strength; it is perceived as a symbol of weakness. There comes a time when actions must speak louder than words. 26/11 was one such time when it just should have been done. It, therefore, is my considered opinion India should have actioned a kinetic response in the days following India’s 9/11.”
Tewari is a member of the ‘Group of 23’ leaders who had written to Sonia Gandhi seeking organisational overhaul and elections for every post in the Congress party.
Citing excerpts of the book, the BJP on Tuesday alleged that the grand old party-led UPA government put the national security at stake by not responding strongly after the Mumbai terror attacks.
Addressing a press conference at the party headquarters, BJP spokesperson Gaurav Bhatia said this confirms that the UPA government was “useless”.
Bhatia said Tewari’s book confirms that the “Congress-led UPA government was insensitive, useless and was not even concerned about national security”. The UPA government had put the national security at stake, he alleged.
Attacking Congress over the excerpts released, BJP spokesperson Amit Malviya tweeted, “After Salman Khurshid, another Congress leader throws UPA under the bus to sell his book. Manish Tewari in his new book slams the UPA for weakness in the name of restrain post 26/11. Air Chief Marshal Fali Major is already on record saying IAF was ready to strike but UPA froze.”
Responding to the criticisms, Tewari tweeted, “I am rather amused at @BJP4India reaction to one excerpt from a 304 Page book that tries to dissect responses to National Security Situations that Impacted India. I wonder would they react similarly to some “hard analysis’ about their handling of the National Security Remit also?”
As many as 166 people were killed in the Mumbai terror attacks carried out by 10 Pakistani terrorists at different places in the city. The attacks began on November 26, 2008, and went on till November 29. Ajmal Kasab, the only terrorist who was captured alive, was hanged four years later on November 21, 2012.
In the book, Tewari has also hit out at the Modi government, alleging that the scrapping of the Mountain Strike Corps is the “greatest disservice” that this government did to India’s national security.
The former minister said in July 2018, the defence and finance ministers of the subsequent Modi-led government shelved all the plans of raising the Mountain Strike Corps against China citing financial constraints.
Mounting pressure on the LAC leading to the Doklam crisis in 2017 could have been averted provided the mountain strike corps would have been raised, trained, resourced and efficaciously deployed, he said.
(With PTI inputs)
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