Congress on Monday appeared to be on the back-foot after its 'hugplomacy' video taking a jibe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi's habit of welcoming global leaders with a bear hug, triggered a controversy.
As BJP demanded an apology for the "immature" video, Congress took the plea that it had no "malafide intent" and only took a "humourous" view of events.
"I think it is time that we started appreciating the virtues of humour in politics," Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi told reporters when asked about BJP's demand for an apology.
"Whatever the view depicts is nothing but a sense of humour and a coining of words. Let me be very clear that the content cannot be said by any stretch of perverse or normal imagination to be vicious or in any sense meant to create a malafide intent," Singhvi said.
On Sunday, when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrived in India on a state visit, Congress posted the video compiling photographs of Modi's bear hugs to world leaders,
"With Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu visiting India, we look forward to more hugs from PM Modi! #Hugplomacy," the Congress said on Twitter.
"A certain sense of humour should not escape us and that is all that depicts," Singhvi said.