Congress leader Sam Pitroda, who had courted controversy for his remark in connection with the anti-Sikh riots of 1984, should be ashamed and must apologise to the nation, party President Rahul Gandhi said on Monday.
"Sam Pitroda's comment is wrong. For this, he should feel ashamed. He has to apologise to the country," he said at an election rally in this Punjab town.
Gandhi said he called Pitroda on the phone and asked him to issue an apology.
The Congress chief was accompanied by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh at the rally in this town, which is known for the largest grain market in Asia as it gets millions of tonnes of produce from Punjab's agricultural fields.
The 1984 anti-Sikh riots have been a sensitive issue for people of Punjab, mainly the Sikhs, and is likely to damage the Congress' prospects in the state that will go to the polls in the last phase of the Lok Sabha polls on Sunday.
Pitroda, the Indian Overseas Congress chief, had brushed off the 1984 anti-Sikh riots by saying, "hua toh hua" (it just happened).
On May 10, he apologised saying that what he said was "completely twisted and taken out of context because my Hindi isn't good".
His apology came after Bharatiya Janata Party leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and Sikh organisations slammed him for his comment.