As the BJP approached central poll panel against Rahul Gandhi over his speech alleging the violation of model code of conduct, the Congress vice president responded with a jibe saying, “Daro Mat”.
“Dear BJP, daro mat (Dear BJP, don’t be scared),” he wrote on the micro-blogging site Twitter attaching a news report of BJP moving Election Commission against him.
In its complaint, the BJP has contended that Rahul Gandhi’s speech at the Congress party meet last week violated model code of conduct for it evoked religious figures, which is in direct contravention of recent Supreme Court order which outlaws seeking votes in the name of religion or caste.
Addressing his party workers at the Congress meet in New Delhi, Gandhi had said, “I see the symbol of Congress party (hand palm) in Guru Nanakji’s photo, Lord Shiva’s photo, Hazrat Ali’s photo, those of Gautam Buddha and Mahavir Jain and others…”.
“I see the symbol of Congress party as the one saying ‘Fear Not’,” he had stressed further.
Taking on the deputy leader of principal opposition party, a BJP delegation comprising Union ministers Prakash Javadekar and Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi had lodged a complaint with the Election Commission this week. The ruling party has sought freezing of Congress’ poll symbol ‘hand palm’.
“The grand old party’s grand new leader has tried to give communal colour to the elections by his statement in which he co-related the Congress’ ‘hand’ with various religious figures. This is a clear cut case of corrupt practice. There should be action against both Congress and its leader,” Naqvi told reporters after filing complaint with Election Commission.
A similar complaint was also lodged by the UP state unit of BJP last week, where its delegation led by former MLC Shayam Nandan Singh, had met the Chief Electoral officer of the state, T Venktesh, demanding action against Rahul Gandhi.
The delegation also handed over a video footage of Gandhi’s speech, alleging that the comments were against the recent Supreme Court’s order.
“Rahul Gandhi’s behaviour is not only violative of the apex court’s orders but also against section 123 (3) of Representation of the People’s Act 1951,” the delegation said, further demanding “disqualification” of the Congress party.
In what could be a straight defiance of BJP’s charge, Gandhi once again referred to religious figures and saints while talking of his party’s ‘hand palm’ symbol at a rally in Rishikesh on Monday.
“You will see this symbol in every religion… Have you seen the photos of Lord Shiva, Gautam Budhha, Guru Nanakji and even in Islam when praying they use hand? It means never be afraid. Every religion teaches us that,” he said.
(With inputs from the PTI)