Modi’s Taliban comments a frustrated outburst: Congress


New Delhi : The Congress Monday hit back at Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi for his “Taliban” comments, saying it was a “frustrated” outburst after his long questioning by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) over the 2002 riots.

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“Modi is feeling very frustrated because for the first time, a chief minister was made to stand before the Special Investigating Team for about 10 hours in a question and answer session,” Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni said on the sidelines of a Congress Seva Dal function here.

Responding to questions about Modi describing those critical of Amitabh Bachchan’s decision to be brand ambassador of Gujarat as “Talibans of public life” in his blog, Soni said Modi should not use the word Taliban in a “light and flippant manner” as those who had lived under the rule of the fundamentalists know what it is like. She said Modi should make statements only after due deliberation.

Modi wrote in his blog that “a great artist with legendary humility and even taller achievements” like Amitabh Bachchan has “chosen to celebrate the glorious heritage of Gujarat while facing a lot of criticisms”.

“These people, while brandishing Mahatma Gandhi’s name are busy creating a new viciousness in the flow of our public life. These ‘Talibans of Untouchability’ have lost all their sensibilities in their pursuit of anti-Gujarat attitudes,” he said.

Congress leaders in Maharashtra had protested over the presence of Bachchan at the inauguration of the Bandra-Worli seak link extension function last week, saying they were upset over “his association with Modi”.

Bachchan had accepted Modi’s offer to be the brand ambassador of the state.