New Delhi: Indian Overseas Congress chief Sam Pitroda, whose comments on Pulwama attack created quite a stir, attacked the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for diverting attention from real issues like unemployment and agrarian distress by insulting people and calling them anti-national.

He further accused the media of playing into BJP’s hands while intensifying the falsehood propagated by the saffron party leaders against him. Pitroda added that the BJP insulted people by calling them anti-national. He said, “As a citizen of India, I have every right to ask questions to the BJP. But no one has the right to call me Pakistan-sympathiser or anti-national simply because I question the BJP.”

Pitroda, however, made it clear that he will not apologise for his comments as he did not say anything out of place. He retorted, “I have never said anything for which I need to apologise to anyone. And I will never apologise.”

Questioning as to what was wrong with the comments he had made, Pitroda said, “I can’t understand why Prime Minister Narendra Modi immediately tweeted about my comments and BJP president and other leaders addressed the media on what I said. Why were they so disturbed by my comments?”

He added that the BJP is demanding votes on nationalism and Hindutva grounds while the Congress believed in the ‘Idea of India’ in which people of all faiths can live peacefully. Pitroda said that there was an emergency-like situation in the country presently and people were afraid to question BJP.

“If anyone speaks against BJP, Income Tax officials are sent to harass them and even journalists criticising BJP are threatened,” he said.

On an earlier occasion also, after being criticised by PM Modi and several BJP leaders for trivialising the Pulwama attack, Pitroda had issued a clarification saying that he had raised all the questions in a personal capacity and as a citizen of India.