BJP takes exception to Sonia dubbing it ''obstructionist'' party

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New Delhi, Nov 17 (UNI) Taking strong exception to Congress President Sonia Gandhi calling the BJP an ''obstructionist party'', the BJP today said it was yet another attempt to deflect the attention of the common man from reality -- the Congress-led UPA coalition's dismal performance.

BJP spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad said the only glue that was holding the UPA constituents as an entity was its 'patent hatred' towards the saffron party with all its impeccable nationalistic credentials.

The BJP, he said, was a party that was in power at the Centre for six long years and was still in power in ten states on its own or in a coalition. ''Describing this party as an obstructionist only reflects the undemocratic mindset of the Congress President,'' he said.

Mrs Gandhi, who was raising the issue of terrorism, should tell the nation the truth why Mohammad Afzal, the convicted prisoner in the Parliament attack case, has not been hanged yet. Why was it that the government did not contest the acquittal of Abdul Rashid Madani, the prime accused in the Coimbatore serial blasts which took away the lives of 58 innocent people and injuring 200 others.

''The terrorists and their patrons are well aware that with the UPA at the helm at the Centre, initiatives to combat terrorism is a tradable for votes,'' he said.

Referring to yesterday's arrests of Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorists, who had obvious plans of kidnapping Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi, Mr Prasad said it was high time to demonstrate a firm resolve to combat terrorism regardless of political consequences.

About Mr Gandhi, touted by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as the 'future of India', he said the BJP did not feel that he is a threat to the party nor does he possess a potential to lead the nation.

Accusing the Congress of indulging in semantics and 'pseudo minority tokenism', Mr Prasad said it was shocking that Mrs Gandhi had maintained deafening silence on the atrocities committed against Muslims in Nandigram. Her continued silence on the issue indicated that her ''conscience'' had been overshadowed by the compulsions to hold on to power at all costs, he added.


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