NEW DELHI (TIP): The Congress on October 9 accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of putting politics over national duty, pointing to his absence from Delhi as tensions mount on the border with Pakistan.

AICC spokesman Anand Sharma said, “When we have such a serious issue at our borders, we should not have an absentee Prime Minister.”

He said Modi was a “control freak” who “wants to be everywhere… whether by design or default, the PM has been absent during the crucial period. He has been busy pretending to be the chief ministerial face for every state, be it Maharashtra or Haryana”.

Sharma said the statement on Pakistani firing from defence minister Arun Jaitley came very late. “It is good that the finance minister, who holds the additional charge of defence ministry, has finally spoken… For days, there was neither the PM nor the defence minister in sight. India cannot choose to have a part-time defence minister,” he said.

Congress slammed Jaitley for his statement that opposition’s criticism was “ill-informed”, saying the opposition had not been taken into confidence over the matter and it was the PM and his government that were acting “irresponsibly” on the issue.

“Did the Prime Minister have the basic courtesy to call the leaders of principal opposition parties of both Houses to discuss it?” he asked.