A classic example of shoot yourself in the foot, it all began at the AICC meet on Friday, Jan 17, when Mani Shankar Aiyar said that BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi could never ever be the PM. "However if he wants, we can help him and he can have a tea stall here," he said.
This comment didn't enrage the BJP at all. In fact the party laughed and decided to make the 'tea-vendor' jibe one of its biggest strengths and go ahead in the Lok Sabha elections.
In fact Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah too tweeted and said that 'Modi's humble origins are a positive that some of us can't claim.'
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet blockquote" lang="en"><p>Modi has a lot of negatives but his humble origins are a positive some of us can't claim. We aren't helping our campaign by mocking him.</p>— Omar Abdullah (@abdullah_omar) <a href="https://twitter.com/abdullah_omar/statuses/424070262582022144">January 17, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
Mod is always seen talking about his humble origins as a 'chaiwala' and says that if a chaiwala can be the PM candidate then any chaiwala can be the PM candidate. Recently when Modi addressed a rally in Mumbai, special invites were sent to tea vendors to attend the rally, which was an instant hit with the tea-sellers community.
The BJP now plans to play this tea-vendor jibe in their favour as Modi will be seen interacting with tea-sellers across the country starting Februrary 1. The 'Chai Pe Charcha with NaMo' will see Modi mingling with chaiwalas in 300 cities.
Shankar was later on seen doing a U-turn on his comment and said that he was 'misquoted'.
Now that BJP has managed to turn this comment in their favour, one needs to wait and watch for the next Congress's move or should we say another case of 'shoot yourself in the foot'.