Hitting out at Congress for asking Prime Minister Narendra Modi to "apologise in Jama Masjid" for the 2002 riots, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Monday said those who commit mistakes only they serve an apology.
"This is a shameful statement by the Congress. They apologised for their deeds in 1984 anti-sikh riots and now they are creating a baseless controversy. The truth is only those people who have committed mistakes apologise, but those who have not done anything wrong why they will serve an apology," BJP leader Bizay Sonkar Shastri told ANI here.
Another BJP leader S. Prakash, in Bengaluru, said instead of focusing their attention on development, the Congress was trying to evoke Gujarat riots to win over the Muslim votes.
"The Congress has once again brought the 2002 riots into the campaign. Till now, they were silent on the issue. They are demanding an illogical apology from the Prime Minister. It was a communal riot where both Hindus and Muslims were killed which happened in the aftermath of Godhra incident.
"Several cases have been filed and many have been convicted also, unlike in 1984 riots, where the Congress did not show any interest to convict those who were involved in the Sikh massacre," Prakash added.
Earlier on Sunday, BJP chief Amit Shah tore into Congress' demand, saying the matter was being raised to consolidate votes in the ongoing Gujarat Assembly election.
"Congress' Charan Singh said Prime Minister Modi must go inside Jama Masjid and apologies for 2002 riots. Entire nation knows the allegations levelled on the Prime Minster by the Congress backed NGO were all false. Yet for vote bank consolidation, 2002 is being raised in 2017," Shah told the media in Gandhinagar.
The first phase of polling took place on Saturday and recorded a voter turnout of 66.75 percent in 89 of 182 constituencies.
The second-phase voting in remaining 93 constituencies is on December 14, and the votes will be counted on December 18.