Priyanka likens Modi to 'Duryodhana', hits back at PM for insulting 'martyr' Rajiv Gandhi
Ambala, May 07: Stressing that the BJP leaders never talk about the development carried out by them or the promises fulfilled, Congress' Priyanka Gandhi on Tuesday hit back at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his remarks of former prime minister and her father Rajiv Gandhi. Priyanka also likened PM Modi to Duryodhana, a character from epic Mahabharata who denies right to his brothers by unscrupulous means.
On Saturday at a poll rally in Uttar Pradesh, Prime Minister Modi said that the life of Congress chief Rahul Gandhi's father and former PM Rajiv Gandhi had ended as "bhrashtachari number 1" (Corrupt). PM Modi's was referring to Bofors pay-off scam of the 1980s.
Modi drew falk for his remarks and was condemned not just by Rahul Gandhi's sister Priyanka Gandhi and former union minister P Chidambaram, but also other opposition leaders like Akhilesh Yadav and Arvind Kejriwal.
"The BJP leaders never in their poll campaign say whether they fulfilled their promise or not. They seek vote in the name of martyrs or the martyr (Rajiv Gandhi) of my family. Duryodhan had also lots of ego and his ego was the reason of his defeat," she said in Ambala, Haryana, today.
"The talk about the martyr (Rajiv Gandhi) of my family. This election is not about one family. This election is about BJP's failure. Prime Minister has no time to listen to the farmers but has time to ask for votes by taking the name of martyr of my family," she added.
On Sunday, Rahul Gandhi responded to PM Modi's comments on his father with a tweet - and a hug. "Modi Ji, The battle is over. Your Karma awaits you. Projecting your inner beliefs about yourself onto my father won't protect you. All my love and a huge hug. Rahul," read the tweet from the Congress chief.
"Today the biggest challenge in front of country is job opportunity, farmer development, women security. During 2014 election there was lots of hope. People of Haryana had lots of hope in Centre but in the last five years, there was a decrease in job opportunity," Priyanka said today.
PM Modi's was referring to Bofors pay-off scam of the 1980s. Rajiv Gandhi's name had cropped up in the case which pertained to a defence contract that India signed with Swedish arms manufacturer AB Bofors for the supply of 155 mm howitzer guns for the Army. Signed in March 1986 for Rs 1,437 crore, the Bofors deal was for the supply of 400 howitzers to India.
The Bofors deal ran into controversy in 1987, when a Swedish radio channel alleged that the arms manufacturer paid bribes to top Indian politicians and defence officials through middlemen. The then defence minister V P Singh resigned putting the Rajiv Gandhi government in the dock.
V P Singh built his campaign for the 1989 Lok Sabha election on Bofors pay-off scam. His Janata Dal came to power as the Congress lost the national election with Rajiv Gandhi's image getting a serious beating in the public.
The Congress approached the Election Commission on Monday, seeking action against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, including a ban on his campaigning, for his remarks against former PM Rajiv Gandhi.