Accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the ruling BJP of ‘politicising’ the work of the armed forces, former Air Force veteran from Gujarat, Anil Kumar Kaushik, joined the Congress in Ahmedabad on Tuesday.

Kaushik served in the IAF for 17 years as a flight engineer before retiring in the 1990s at the rank of sergeant.

Kaushik, who joined the Congress in the presence of Gujarat unit chief Amit Chavda, claimed he is upset the way PM Modi and other BJP leaders were seeking votes in the names of the armed forces.

“The Congress never took credit for several important army operations, such as liberation of Goa and East Pakistan (that went on to become modern day Bangladesh). Surgical strikes also took place in the past. But, the party (Congress) never used such army operations to get political mileage,” Kaushik told reporters.

“However, today’s BJP government is politicising the Army’s work. Instead of talking about real issues, BJP leaders are seeking votes in the name of armed forces. Narendra Modi should not forget that he is the PM of entire country, not just of a party,” Kaushik said.

Welcoming Kaushik in the party, Gujarat Congress president Amit Chavda alleged Modi was trying to build his “political career” by repeatedly invoking armed forces’ operations.