Jaipur (Rajasthan) [India] : Coming down heavily on his Assam counterpart and BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma over his remarks at a poll rally in Rajasthan the day before, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Saturday said he was speaking more than he should to please his political masters in the saffron camp.
Addressing a public meeting in the poll-bound state on Friday, the Assam CM asked if not about the ‘Hindus’, should the BJP speak about ‘Babar and Aurangzeb? (Mughal emperors).’
Responding to his statement on Saturday, Gehlot told ANI, ‘I don’t want to comment on his (Assam CM’s) statement. He is saying things to please his masters in the BJP top brass. He is raising his decibels to prove his loyalty to the BJP, as he was with us (Congress) earlier. He is speaking more than he should.’
Canvassing for the BJP in Jaipur Rural district on Friday, Sarma proclaimed, ‘We will proudly speak about Hinduism. Who else should we speak about, if not about the Hindus? Should we speak about Babar, Aurangzeb? We will continue to speak about Hinduism with pride.’
Later, responding to a reporter’s question on Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s claim of the BJP dragging religion and Hindutva into their poll pitch for Rajasthan, the Assam CM said, ‘We will continue to speak proudly about Hinduism.’
Taking a swipe at the saffron party, CM Gehlot said the elections in Rajasthan should be fought on ‘our 5 years of work but the BJP doesn’t have any issues to fight on’.
‘When we, as the incumbent party, are giving some guarantees to the people in our quest to return to power, it is the job of a responsible Opposition to respond to the same and raise questions. Instead, they are dragging religion into their campaign discourse. There is no mention of OPS (Old Pension Scheme) in their manifesto. Several other commitments that we have made are missing in their manifesto. People are laughing at them. Their campaign discourse should be built around our performance over the last 5 years in Rajasthan. There should be a post-mortem of our government. Let the people decide our fate thereafter,’ Gehlot added.
Responding to the CM’s guarantees to the people ahead of the November 25 Rajasthan polls, Sarma, addressing another public meeting on Saturday, said, ‘What guarantees are they going on about? In Assam, the prices of petrol are between Rs97 and Rs 98 per litre while people here are paying Rs 108 for every litre. This means that for every litre of petrol that people buy, Rs 10 goes into Ashok Gehlot’s coffers. Nowhere in the country do consumers pay more for electricity than Rajasthan. What guarantees are they talking about?’
On Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s statement on, Gehlot, Congress’s CM face in Rajasthan, Sarma said, ‘The faces of our party workers are better than that of yours. All party workers of the BJP are our faces. And, our biggest face is PM Narendra Modi, who you cannot compete with.’
The counting of votes for Rajasthan will take place on December 3.