A war of words broke out between Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and Union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal on social media Sunday over the former's absence from an official event marking the Jallianwala Bagh massacre's centenary.
Singh has alleged that the central government deliberately chose to hold a "parallel event" instead of supporting the initiatives and programmes of the state government.
At a poll rally on Sunday in Jammu and Kashmir's Kathua, a town located on Punjab's border, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Singh boycotted the function because he was busy in "Congress parivar's bhakti (appeasing the Gandhi family)".
"Shocked at @ capt_amarinder's refusal to join the country in paying tributes to Jallianwala Bagh martyrs. Was it not a matter of pride that the country was saluting sons & daughters of Punjab who were martyred so that we could live free lives?," the SAD president tweeted.
"You @ capt_amarinder proved your care for martyrs by boycotting national function headed by the Vice President of India... Sad you cheapened 100th anniversary of massacre by holding parallel function of PPCC. Martyr families won't forgive this insult," Union Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal said in a tweet.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi and Amarinder Singh had on Saturday morning paid floral tributes at the Jallianwala Bagh Memorial in Amritsar. The function organised by the Centre was organised in the afternoon that day.
Singh lashed out at the Akali leadership for "trying to politicise the Jallianwala Bagh centenary, quite patently at the behest of their political masters the BJP".
"Notwithstanding the fact that elections in India have, over the years, become a playground for no-holds barred battles, it was shameful that the SAD, at the bidding of the BJP leadership, was exploiting the Jallianwala Bagh martyrs to woo voters," he tweeted.
"The Badal clan, including Harsimrat, had reduced themselves to being puppets in the hands of the BJP leaders," he said.
"The BJP and its allies were bereft of any constructive electoral agenda, and were thus resorting to all kinds of falsehoods and engaging in petty, low-level politics in a frantic effort to grab power," the senior Congress leader said in a statement.
Harsimrat also put out a video on her Twitter account, attacking Singh, the scion of erstwhile Patiala Royals, on the Jallianwala Bagh tragedy issue.
"When will u learn lesson from history @ capt_amarinder? Or you covering up ur grandfather's role in supporting the man who ordered Jallianwala Bagh massacre? Pl watch this video to refresh memory about how Bhupinder Singh cosied up to Gen Michael O'Dwyer and insulted the martyrs," she tweeted.
He said the Bathinda MP, in a desperate bid to mislead the people of Punjab and woo their votes for the Lok Sabha elections, has posted a series of factually incorrect tweets on his grandfather.
"You're asking me to learn distorted history @HarsimratBadal_? A random video of a social visit by my grandfather in London, with no connect to #Jallianwala BaghMassacre, wont help you cover your great grandfather's lavish dinner to butcher Gen Dyer on the very day of the massacre," Singh tweeted in response to Harsimrat's tweets.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)