Congress president Rahul Gandhi said on Friday his party colleague Sam Pitroda’s comments on the 1984 anti-Sikh riots were completely “out of line” and he should apologise.
“Hua to hua (so what, they happened),” Pitroda had said about the riots when journalists questioned him in Dharamsala in Himachal Pradesh on Thursday.
The Congress quickly distanced itself from Pitroda, who is chief of Overseas Congress and an advisor to Rahul.
“What Sam Pitroda has said is absolutely and completely out of line and is not appreciated. I will be communicating this to him directly. He must apologise for his comment,” Gandhi said.
He noted that the riots were a tragedy that had caused tremendous pain.
Rahul said former prime minister Manmohan Singh and former Congress president Sonia Gandhi have apologised for the riots.
“We all have made our position very clear and that is the 1984 happenings were a terrible tragedy and should never have happened,” he said.
Pitroda’s remarks kicked up a major political storm with the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying that they reflected the “character and arrogance” of the Congress party.
Pitroda, on his part, accused the BJP of twisting the three words in Hindi on the riots to “distort facts, divide us(Congress) and hide their failures” and said things of the past are not relevant in this election.