Congress Party on Wednesday took potshots at LK Advani, saying the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) veteran's remark is equivalent to an assault on the democratic system.
Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari said Advani's statement was completely uncalled for.
"The house was discussing a very sensitive situation, which is prevailing in Assam. And at that point of time for the lead speaker of the opposition to get totally detract and label the entire UPA 2 Government as 'illegitimate' is most unfortunate and completely uncalled for and deserves to be condemned in the strongest term because it is not only an assault on the UPA Government, it is tantamount to an assault on the democratic system," he said.
Speaking on the same lines, Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal said Advani was a bit confused and got his facts wrong.
"For what happened in 2008, how can UPA 2 in 2012 be called illegitimate? So, I think that it happens sometimes in your over-enthusiasm to make a point these mistakes do occur but this itself was an illegitimate mistake. We did not accept a seasoned politician like Advani to have made this basic mistake," he said.
Sibal further said one can't call the governments 'illegitimate' because the respective governments have been elected by the people of the country, and added that it's an affront to both the Parliament and to the people of India.
"But we understand that the suffering of the NDA and particularly the BJP for having lost for the second consecutive term, obviously the mental agony of Advani ji over the years is reflecting itself in these very unfortunate statements," he added.
Union Law and Justice Minister Salman Khurshid also denounced Advani's remark and urged him to reflect upon it.
"Our position is that this is unacceptable both in terms of parliamentary procedure as well as in terms of the feelings that were expressed by not just our party but also other parties," said Khurshid.
"The bottom line is that this is unacceptable and I sincerely hope that Mr Advani being a very senior parliamentarian and senior leader would reflect upon it," he said.
Meanwhile, BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain clearing his party's stand said Advani gave the reference of 2008 motion on how the UPA misused their powers and position to save the government on the issue of nuclear deal.
"For what should he apologise? They (UPA) saved their government on the issue of nuclear deal by misusing their power and position and by giving money. The matter is in the court and investigation is in progress. And there is nothing wrong if Advani referred to that incident and pointed out their mistake. We are not sitting here to clap for the government," he said.
Hussain further said Advani clearly pointed out the drawbacks of the government because Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh represents Assam.
"During the adjournment motion over the Kokrajhar issue, Advaniji clearly pointed out their drawbacks, because the Prime Minister represents the state. And in 2008 also the government was unable to do any development work and was just focused on the nuclear deal. Advaniji was giving a reference and made it clear that by what means the government saved itself in 2008," he said.