The BSP made the photograph of the Congress President the focus of the party's state-wide protest against what it termed as 'petty politicking by all opposition parties'.
Naseemuddin Siddiqui, who holds four portfolio in Mayawati' s government, displayed pictures of two other opposition leaders- BJP leader LK Advani wearing a silver crown and Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav swinging a silver 'gada".
"No one raises even an eyebrow if Sonia Gandhi receives a currency note garland; no one talks about L K Advani wearing a silver crown; and even when Mulayam Singh Yadav flaunts a silver 'gada", no one minds that. But all hell breaks loose if a Dalit"s daughter is offered a garland of currency notes," Siddiqui said in his address to the rally.
Referring to the beehive issue, Siddique said that the opposition placed the beehive to jeopardise the rally after thier other attempts to cause diruption failed.
"The opposition is trying to frustrate the party rally from day one. Initially, they got a PIL filed against holding of the rally; when they did not succeed with that, they engineered disturbing of a beehive, leading to a swarm of bees to rush to the rally venue. But that too failed as the bees chose to settle down under the shade of the dais without causing any kind of disturbance to anyone or biting anybody. The opposition eventually raised the garland bogey."
Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh Congress spokesman Akhilesh Pratap Singh in response said that there was a major difference between the cash garland offered to Sonia Gandhi and Mayawati.
"All I wish to point out is that while Sonia Gandhi with all her inheritance of four Nehru-Gandhi generations has total assets worth Rs.1.32 crore, Mayawati"s officially declared assets have already shot up to Rs.62 crore in a matter of just four years," Singh said.