Union Minister Alphons Kannanthanam has embroiled himself in controversy once again, this time for posting a picture of him in front of the coffin of Vasantha Kumar, the jawan who was killed in the terror attack in Pulwama. Alphons posted the picture on Twitter and Facebook, only to delete it later following social media ire. The jawan's last rites was conducted on Saturday night at Thrikkaipetta in Wayanad in Kerala, where his ancestral home is located.
‘Good bye Martyr Vasanthakumar. We are alive because of you” - Kannanthanam tweeted with the picture. “The cremation of Vasantha Kumar, who attained martyrdom at Pulwama in Kashmir held at his home. It is because of the sacrifice of people like Vasantha Kumar that we are able to live a safe life,” he posted on Facebook along with the picture.
This started a flood of comments on social media, calling him out for his insensitivity. The Minister later took to Facebook to say that the picture was clicked by someone in the crowd while he was moving away after paying tribute to the soldier. "The person who clicked this image sent it to my office handling the social media,” he explained.
"Sir you should have used a better camera for this selfie, can't see the shame on your face," reads one of the comments.
Sir, you should have used a better camera for this selfie, can't see the shame on your face— Paresh (@hi_paresh) February 16, 2019
"What a shame Mr Alphonce Kannanthanam... Taking selfie in front of a soldier’s dead body," reads another comment.
“Alphons Kannanthanam, former bureaucrat and presently BJP minister, in the most insensitive manner, poses for a selfie during the funeral of Vasanthakumar who was killed in Pulwama: shame”, a third one stated. Another called it “Narcissism at its Peak. This #Proverb suits "As The King So is the Minister".
@alphonstourism ,former beauracrat and presently BJP minister, in the most insensitive manner, poses for a selfie during the funeral of Swntham Kumar who was killed in #PulwamaAttack !— balu sunil (@balusunil2) February 16, 2019
Moral of the story: Cracking civil service is no benchmark for anything. pic.twitter.com/7UwViYcPpv
The picture was posted from the minister's page when he was ‘supposedly asleep. Though his intention was to show that he didn’t mind sleeping at a camp with no facilities and he was 'ignorant' of someone taking the picture and posting it, over 29000 people responded to it, mostly with a 'laugh' emoticon.