Rahul Gandhi takes ‘New India’ jibe at PM Modi on Pulwama attack, says 40 CRPF jawans denied martyr status

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Politics has erupted over the dastardly attack at a CRPF convoy in Pulwama, with the Congress party taking potshots at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the terror strike. Minutes after the Congress hit out at PM Modi over inaction, party president Rahul Gandhi took a jibe at the Prime Minister over the denial of Shaheed status to 40 CRPF personnel who lost their lives on February 14. However, what has surprised many is that he sought to draw a link between the Pulwama attack and the controversy over the Rafale deal. Gandhi linked Shaheed status to Rafale allegations while suggesting corporate favouritism by Prime Minister Modi in the multi-billion deal. In a tweet put on Thursday, the Congress president said: The brave are martyred. Their families struggle.40 Jawans give their lives but are denied the status of While this man has never given only taken. He Welcome to Modi In 2017, the ministry of defence stated in response to an RTI query that there is no term as martyr or shaheed in the Army or the police. It said that a soldier or a policeman killed in action is called a battle casualty or operations casualty respectively. The issue resurfaced after a plea was filed in the Delhi High Court seeking direction to media houses to use martyr instead of killed while referring to personnel killed on duty. However, the court dismissed the petition. The Ministry of Home Affairs, too, has clarified that the word martyr is not used in reference to any casualties from the Indian armed forces during the battle. In 2016, Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju in response to a question had said: No such term is used in reference to the Central Armed Police Forces and Assam Rifles personnel who get killed in action or in any operation.

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