New Delhi, May 10 : Cracking the whip against Sam Pitroda for his remarks on 1984 anti-Sikh riots, Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Friday said Pitroda's comments were “absolutely and completely out of line and not appreciated" and asked him to apologise for his comment.
Mr Gandhi said he will personally speak to Mr Pitroda and tell him that he does not appreciate such remarks. 'What Mr Pitroda has said is absolutely and completely out of line and not appreciated. I will be communicating this to him directly. He must apologise for his comment,' Mr Gandi said in a post on Facebook.
Calling the 1984 Sikh riots as "a needless tragedy that caused tremendous pain", Mr Gandhi said former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his mother and Congress chairperson Sonia Gandhi had apologised for it.
'I think justice has to be done. The people who were responsible for the 1984 tragedy have to be punished. Former PM Manmohan Singh has apologised. My mother, Sonia Gandhi has apologised. We all have made our position very clear - that 1984 was a terrible tragedy and should never have happened,' the Congress president said.
Earlier, in an interview to a news website, Mr Gandhi said, 'I think that’s completely out of line and I think he (Sam Pitroda ) should apologise for this… I think 1984 was a tragedy. It caused tremendous pain to the people. And I think he absolutely owes everybody an apology.' “And what Mr Pitroda has said is absolutely and completely out of line. I haven’t spoken to him but I will, I will personally speak to him and tell him that I don’t appreciate this type of nonsense,' Mr Gandhi said.
Talking to reporters on Thursday, Mr Pitroda, responding to the BJP allegations that the Nanavati commission reports that the instructions for the 1984 violence came from former prime minister late Rajiv Gandhi after his mother and former prime minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated, said,'I don't think so, this is also another lie, and what about 1984? hua toh hua (it happened, it happened).'
The comments triggered strong criticism from the BJP and other political parties. Prime Minister Narendra Modi too slammed the Congress over Pitroda’s comments, saying the “three words” reflected the character, mentality and intentions of the Congress.
The controversy has erupted at a time when barely two days are left for Lok Sabha elections in Delhi on May 12 and ten days in Punjab on May 19. UNI