Attacks on jawans on rise under Parrikar: Sharad Pawar

Panaji: A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi heaped praise on Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, NCP supremo Sharad Pawar today said armed forces’ establishments were being “constantly” attacked under his watch and “the welfare of soldiers was not being taken care of”.

“While Pakistan-based terrorists are constantly attacking our defence bases, the Prime Minister says he is not worried as we have got a Defence Minister with a 36-inch chest. The PM might not be worried but we are,” Pawar said at a rally in Vasco town in support of NCP candidate Jose Philip D’Souza for the February 4 Assembly polls.

“We are worried because young boys from our homes and villages who joined the armed forces are being attacked by terrorists and their welfare is not taken care of.

“How can they claim to be protecting India’s common people when they cannot ensure safety of soldiers,” Pawar asked.

At his rally here, the PM had yesterday hailed Parrikar as a “strong” Defence Minister and had said the entire world is was discussing surgical strikes by the army on terror camps in PoK.

“I have also been Defence Minister. After Parrikar took over as Defence Minister, terrorists attacked army bases five times… They dared to attack our army base and killed our soldiers,” the former Union minister said.

He said BJP was boasting of the surgical operation as if it was conducted for the first time.

“I do agree they carried out a surgical operation but it is not the first time that a such surgical operation has been conducted. In the past, the army conducted 50 such surgical operations and have shut the mouth of Pakistan,” the NCP supremo said.