New Delhi: Union Minister Kapil Sibal yesterday claimed that the "pain and agony" reflected in Narendra Modi's feelings over 2002 Gujarat riots was a "belated reaction" aimed at electoral gains during the 2014 Lok Sabha polls and asserted that the "riots baggage" will remain with him.
In an escalation of the Congress attack on the BJP Prime Ministerial candidate, Sibal said pain was heartfelt, spontaneous and an emotion that is expressed "without calculation" and it is "too late" for Modi to express that he was "shaken to the core" over the post-Godhra riots.
"Modi's riots baggage will remain. It is too late for him to express that he was shaken to the core. Had that been so, the core would have reacted in time, not a belated reaction just before the Lok Sabha elections," Sibal said in a write up on his website, two days after the Gujarat Chief Minister broke his silence on riots after 11 years.
The "pain and agony" reflected in Modi's blog on Friday is for an audience whose sympathy will be vital in May, 2014, the Union Law minister added.
"Pain can never be a belated reaction after 11 years of silence. And a person who suffers in silence cannot remain silent for 11 years. While I do not want to be cynical in my comments, I do not want to be dishonest either. This act of liberation does not connect us with the real Modi," he said.
Sibal was reacting to a blog post written by the Gujarat Chief Minister in which he said that he felt "liberated and at peace" in the wake of the clean chit given to him by an Ahmedabad court in a case related to the 2002 riots and claimed he was "shattered" by the blame laid at his door for the killings.
Modi, who had avoided media questioning on the issue for over a decade and had never said sorry or apologised for the riots, had in the blog said that he was "shaken to the core".
Referring to Modi's blog, Sibal said that he wondered which sisters and brothers the Gujarat CM was addressing when he talked about his personal pain.
The sisters and brothers of those who lost their lives needed the healing touch and, that too, immediately after the riots, Sibal said, adding that "11 years is too late".
"Those who plan in solitude never suffer pain in solitude. Those who believe in Newton's Laws of Motion do not wait for 11 years to react," he added.