With the electoral battle peaking in Bihar, Prime Minister Narendra Modi strongly criticised Congress party over the issue of 1984 anti-Sikh riots, saying it should hang its head in shame for the carnage. On the other hand, Congress party vice president Rahul Gandhi accused PM Modi of failing to keep promises made during Lok Sabha elections.
The last phase of Bihar assembly polls will be held on November 5, before the results of the long and tightly contested polls are announced on November 8.
The polls have been marked by controversial statements from the leaders across the spectrum of Nitish Kumar-led ‘Grand Alliance’ and its challenger BJP-led NDA. The rallies on Monday witnessed similar emotions with both the sides appearing in no mood to lend any leeway.
“Today is November 2. Do you recall 1984? Lakhs of Sikhs were massacred in Delhi and across India on the second, third and fourth day of Indira Gandhi’s killing in which serious allegations were made against Congress and its leaders,” Prime Minister Modi said addressing a rally in Seemanchal region of Purnea.
The remarks of Prime Minster came a day after Congress President Sonia Gandhi voiced concern on the issue of “rising intolerance” while speaking at a function in the national capital. Mrs. Gandhi had further said that her party has “vowed to fight the diabolical design of divisive forces to spread hatred, which posed a threat to the unity of the country”.
Few hours later after PM’s rally, addressing public in Araria, Rahul Gandhi claimed that the “actions” of ruling BJP will hasten Congress’ return to power. He also accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of failing to keep promises made during Lok Sabha elections.
“He had promised to bring down prices. From Rs 70 per kg, the price of dal has gone up to Rs 200 per kg…there was a time when people said ‘dal-roti khao prabhu ke gun gaao’…. “He had promised to give employment to youth. Have any one of you been given employment?” Rahul Gandhi said.
Referring to the issue of ‘Black Money’, Congress party vice president said the Prime Minister has also failed to fulfil his another promise of bringing back the ‘Black Money’ and “transferring Rs 15 lakh each.”
Mr. Gandhi also criticised Union Minister VK Singh for his controversial remarks after the killing of two Dalit kids in Haryana’s Ballabgarh last month. Former Chief of the Army staff and MoS External Affairs VK Singh had attracted storm after he said that the “Centre cannot be blamed if somebody throws a stone at a dog” when sought his opinion over the brutal killing of two toddlers.
The echo of the controversy was heard in Bihar, when Rahul Gandhi said, “the two children were not dogs, they were citizens of the country, they were future of India,” without naming VK Singh.
Earlier, PM Modi expressed confidence that BJP will form a government in the state with two-third majority and remarked that incumbent CM Nitish Kumar and his ally Lalu Prasad have only six days left in power.
“You play as many games as you can in these six days. People of the state will settle the scores on November 8,” the Prime Minister said amid applause from the public.
(With inputs from the PTI)