NEW DELHI, Feb 4 � Escalating tension forced Prime Minister Narendra Modi today to defend his party over the Vision Document 2015 goof-up and said the issue was being raked up for political benefits, even as the BJP offered its unconditional apology, removing the word �immigrants� from the document.
Taken aback by the uproar over use of the term �immigrants� to label the people of the North-east, an embarrassed BJP today blamed the goof-up on clerical error.
�Attempts are being made to provoke the people from the North-east...a mistake was made and the party accepted it,� Modi said.
�No one should play with the unity of the country for political benefits,� the Prime Minister said, addressing an election rally at Ambedkar Nagar here.
Defending his party, Modi said the issue was being raked up for political benefits. No Government has worked for the North-east as much as the NDA Government has, he said.
�Due to an inadvertent mistake the word �immigrant� was used in the Vision Document. The party regrets this,� clarified Communications and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad today.
�The word �immigrant� was used in the heading, but the paragraph ahead used the word �migrant�,� he said at a press conference.
�Our brothers and sisters from the North-east are proud citizens of India wherever they are. The BJP walks an extra mile to ensure their safety and this mistake is regretted,� said Prasad.
Meanwhile, at a hurriedly called press conference, BJP�s Delhi unit president Satish Upadhyay announced that the offensive word had been withdrawn. He added that it was a clerical error and his party apologised unconditionally for it.
After facing all-round condemnation, the BJP has now re-phrased the relevant para of its Vision Document 2015. �People from the North East in Delhi to be protected: Special cells in all police stations and special 24-hour helpline numbers to be set up for the protection of the North Eastern people living in Delhi. To safeguard the students of North-east origin, special guardianships will be arranged with local families for them,� the new para read.