‘Congress has left the field wide open for BJP; it is serving the government on a platter to Modi’. She accused the Congress, SP and the Majlis of trying to intimidate Muslims with Mr. Modi to garner votes.

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has held the Congress responsible for the rise of the BJP leader, Narendra Modi. Through its inefficiency, corruption and inept handling of issues, the Congress is serving the government on a platter to Mr. Modi, said AAP national executive member Shazia Ilmi.

Ms. Ilmi, who is in Hyderabad to campaign for AAP candidates, charged the Congress with leaving the field wide open for BJP. “But Mr. Modi’s coming to power will not be good for the country. We can’t have a dictator in democracy,” she remarked.

A divisive personality, Mr. Modi had left his own party in disarray. He had cut down party seniors like L.K. Advani, Jaswant Singh, Murali Manohar Joshi and what he will do to the country if he came to power, she asked.

Ms. Ilmi doesn’t see much difference between the Congress and the BJP as far as corruption is concerned. Though the latter is talking a lot against graft, it is actually going soft on it. Issue of tickets to sons of controversial leaders like Kalyan Singh, Saheb Singh Verma and B.S. Yeddyurappa proved it. “How then is the BJP different from the Congress,” she sought to know.

The AAP leader defended her controversial statement asking Muslims to be communal while voting. “It was said in a sarcastic way and in a private meeting. Even the Election Commission has not taken cognizance of it. The whole thing is blown out of proportion as I am a Muslim,” she said.

She accused the Congress, SP and the Majlis of trying to intimidate Muslims with Mr. Modi to garner votes. But the community should not fall into the trap and go with the party which offers a better deal.

She is confidant of her party securing a huge vote share across the country. AAP is expected to fare well especially in Delhi, Punjab and other parts of UP and might get 20 to 50 Lok Sabha seats. How about south? “I am very bad at prediction,” she quipped and added that the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh was posing problem to all parties. She, however, felt defeat of AAP would be defeat of the people.

Ms. Ilmi, who went round the old city the other day, was quite pleased with the brand value of the AAP. “The response and recall among people is very good,” she said. However, she expressed displeasure at the squalor and drainage overflow everywhere. “The Majlis ought to play a proactive role,” she felt.