A photo of Union Tourism Minister KJ Alphons standing next to a coffin of a CRPF jawan, who was recently killed in a terror attack in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama, had gone viral with many condemning the minister for choosing to click a selfie at a funeral place of a soldier.
Alphons clicked a selfie with the coffin of martyred soldier Vasantha Kumar when the late soldier’s body was brought back to his residence at Lakkidi in Kerala’s Wayanad district on Saturday. “The funeral of CRPF jawan Vasantha Kumar is being held at his home. It is because of people like him that you and I can live peacefully,” the union minister wrote along with the selfie. The tweet didn’t go with netizens who slammed Alphons.
Many social media users had accused him of indulging in “blatant self-promotion” in the back of a tragic incident. Alphons began to face merciless trolling for choosing to use a soldier’s funeral for his personal photo opportunity.
Mr Kannanthanam wrote to the Kerala police chief on Sunday, complaining that “some miscreants had spread false news”.
In a letter written to Kerala’s Director General of Police (DGP), the Union Minister said that he was attending the last rites of Vasantha Kumar at Wynad on February 16.
“I attended the last ceremonial rites of Vasantha Kumar, who sacrificed his life for the nation, on February 16 at Wayanad. Some person had taken my photographs standing near the coffin. My media secretary had put the same on Facebook,” Alphons said.
“Alleging that the photo was a selfie taken by me, some miscreants had spread false news against me on social media. The act of those miscreants reduced my reputation in the public, which is an offense punishable under the provisions of IPC,” he added,
Saying that it was “uncharitable”, “unbecoming and illegal” to spread false news regarding a sensitive issue involving a CRPF soldier who laid down his life for the nation, Alphons said appropriate action should be taken against the culprits under the law.
“It’s uncharitable, unbecoming and illegal to spread false news when I, representing the nation as a Union Minister, was paying homage to a jawan who laid down his life for the nation. Kindly take appropriate action against culprits and bring them before the law,” he urged.
The February 14 attack on the CRPF convoy has changed the dynamics of militancy in the Kashmir Valley.
On February 14, Pakistan-based terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed attacked a convoy of CRPF personnel in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama district.
A 22-year-old Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist Adil Ahmad Dar was identified as the suicide bomber who carried out the attack. Accused of one of the deadliest terrorist attacks the state has ever witnessed, Dar lived just 10 kilometres away from the attack spot in Gundibagh.
The attack that killed 44 CRPF men caused a national outrage against Pakistan with Prime Minister Narendra Modi vowing to avenge the soldiers’ martyrdom. Also Read: Pulwama Attack: Shocking Story of ‘Suicide Bomber’ Adil Ahmad Dar
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