Air strike for votes? BS Yeddyurappa's latest statement has shocked a nation praying for its pilot

For Yeddyurappa, it seems the main point of the IAF air strike on Pakistan was getting the BJP votes, rather than avenging our bravehearts. Is this what the party leadership endorses?

 |  3-minute read |   28-02-2019
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At a time the entire country is praying for the safe return of Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, with tensions at the border only rising, the BJP, it seems, is busy counting the number of seats the valour of the Indian forces can get for the party in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

In Karnataka, senior BJP leader and former chief minister BS Yeddyurappa believes the party can garner 22 out of 28 seats.

yedyurappa-690_022819120133.jpgNo, you are wrong: Senior BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa has tried to use the IAF air strikes on Pakistan to score political points. (Source: Reuters)

Yeddyurappa, who is the chief of the BJP unit in Karnataka, on February 27 said the voters of the state, in large numbers, are apparently waiting for their turn to elect BJP nominees and re-elect Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister.

Speaking to media persons, he said the recent decision taken by the PM to conduct an air strike on terrorist camps has invoked the spirit of nationalism among youth and the people of the country — this spirit of nationalism, Yeddyurappa said, will galvanise voters to vote overwhelmingly in favour of the BJP.

"The atmosphere....day by day, the wind is increasingly blowing in favour of the BJP. Yesterday's (Tuesday's) action of destroying terror hideouts by entering inside Pakistan has resulted in a pro-Modi wave in the country, the results of which can be seen in coming Lok Sabha polls," the BJP leader said.

Yeddyurappa’s statement can safely be called the most insensitive political remark made after the Pulwama attack, and the subsequent air strikes that the Indian Air Force (IAF) launched on terror camps deep into Pakistani territory.

India lost 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) jawans when a car carrying explosives rammed a bus in which the soldiers were moving from Jammu to Srinagar. The impact of the blast was reportedly so huge that the CRPF men who reached the blast site could not even figure out which limb belonged to which body.

pulwama_022819120257.jpgPulwama: Security officials at the site of the outrageous attack. (Source: Reuters)

Twelve days later, the IAF was handed over the responsibility to avenge the killing of the CRPF jawans by attacking terror camps in Pakistan. Twelve Mirage 2000 flew into Pakistan, bombing the hideouts of terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) which had claimed the dishonour of the Pulwama attack.

It is this action — carried out by the IAF — that Yeddyurappa apparently wants to trade for votes.

The state BJP chief has also seemingly been so busy thinking of votes that he doesn’t even seem to know a brave officer of the IAF is now in Pakistani custody. The entire nation has joined Wing Commander Varthaman’s family in prayers for his safe return. But Yeddyurappa is a busy man — busy trying to score points over the outrage that is Pulwama and the righteous action that others have followed with thereafter.

Air strikes are no joke. When a fighter pilot flies into enemy territory, it is sheer patriotism that fuels his flight. Yeddyurappa’s statement, totally political, is a huge disservice to that patriotism.

What are the brave soldiers of India supposed to make out of Yeddyurappa’s statement? What are Indians supposed to make out of this blatant pitch for votes?

What Yeddyurappa has said can’t be undone with an apology. It is time for the BJP leadership to answer the nation — and the soldiers who stand to guard its borders.

Also read: Pulwama Attack: Amit Shah’s dig at Congress is totally uncalled for. BJP must not play politics over tragedy

Writer

Vandana Vandana @vandana5

Author is assistant editor DailyO.

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