The Opposition, especially the Congress party, has taken a strong exception to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s seeming jibe at the party and its chief Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra. Earlier on Sunday night (US time zone), while addressing the Indian community in California, the Prime Minister criticised Congress-led UPA government over the issue of alleged corruption.
Elaborating his veiled criticism further, he said there were allegations of politicians and their families making crores of rupees while his government has no graft charge.
“In our country it doesn’t take much for allegations to come up against politicians… Someone made 50 crores, someone’s son made 250 crores, (someone’s) daughter made 500 crores, (someone’s) damaad (son-in-law) made 1000 crores,” PM Modi said.
“Aren’t you sick of all of this? Aren’t you angry? My countrymen, I am standing in your midst. Is there any allegation against me?” the Prime Minister asked as the audience responded back with a “No”.
Back home, the principal opposition party responded saying they were “ashamed” of Prime Minister’s behaviour on foreign soil.
“Listening to the Prime Minister’s speech I am ashamed. Indian PM after going to California is making fun of his countrymen and is only praising himself,” Congress leader Rashid Alvi said.
Another Congress leader and former minister Manish Tiwari took on PM Narendra Modi and his BJP-led NDA government at the centre over the issue of Lalit Modi controversy and ‘Vyapam’ scam in Madhya Pradesh. The twin issues had led to the massive opposition protest inside and outside the Parliament during the Monsoon session resulting in its near-washout.
“Indians are fed up with the government who helps a ‘bhagoda’. Is there any state government in India like Rajasthan where there are scams after scams. Before taking a dig at others, he should look at his party,” Manish Tewari said.
Another senior opposition leader, KC Tyagi of JD(U) criticised the Prime Minister saying, “the Prime Minister should never attack his country’s opposition in the foreign land”.
Incidentally, this is not the first time that PM Modi’s jibes at the opposition leaders during his visits abroad had attracted sharp reactions at home.
During his visit to Germany, PM Narendra Modi had said that India was “begging earlier and will not beg any more”, evoking sharp criticism from Congress and some other parties. While in Canada, the Prime Minister triggered another controversy by stating that before he became the Prime Minister, it was “scam India” and he inherited filth and corruption.
On his maiden visit to China as Prime Minister in May this year, he had even went on say that people had at one point of time had considered it as “misfortune” to be born in India and ashamed to be called an Indian.
Last month too during his UAE visit, PM Modi had said, “I have got some problems in legacy… Some things were stalled due to the indecisiveness and lethargy of the governments… It is my priority to kick-start those things”.
(With inputs from the PTI)