NEW DELHI: With the National Conference- Congress coalition facing flak in the aftermath of the devastating floods in Jammu and Kashmir, Congress today ducked questions of accountability of the Omar Abdullah Government over charges of poor relief and rescue efforts.
“This is not the time for asking for accountability”, Congress Spokesperson Salman Khurshid told reporters in reply to a volley of questions over the “failure” of the State administration to rise up to the challenge in the wake of the worst floods in a century.
His refrain was that the need of the hour was to focus on relief and rescue efforts so that the people are safe and secure and get adequate help.
He was asked whether it was right to assume that the State administration was ineffective and callous as it failed to gauge the gravity of the situation despite the fact that the State was witnessing heavy rains for a week and the disaster was not like in Uttarakhand which had witnessed a cloudburst.
Khurshid said AICC General Secretary Ambika Soni is rushing to Srinagar tomorrow and she will issue “whatever directions necessary”.
Congress Chief Sonia Gandhi, who is abroad for a health check-up, is in constant touch with the AICC on the situation in the State and relief measures, Khurshid said.
“AICC will be supportive of anybody who will be doing humanitarian duties,” Khurshid remarked when asked about senior Congress leaders Digvijay Singh and Ghulam Nabi Azad complimenting Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the  “prompt” relief work.
Khurshid also commended the splendid work of the Indian Army, Air Force and other security agencies besides the NDRF in rescuing over 80,000 people.