Urges Election Commission to take note of Sonia Gandhi’s reported remarks on Muslim vote

Accusing the Congress of pursuing “communal” politics, the BJP on Wednesday urged the Election Commission to take cognisance of Sonia Gandhi’s reported appeal to Muslims that they should not let their votes split in Lok Sabha elections.

BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar told reporters that Jama Masjid Imam Syed Ahmed Bukhari had quoted Ms. Gandhi as saying that Muslims’ votes should not split during her meeting with a delegation led by the Imam on Tuesday.

“Congress is appealing to Muslims to vote on communal and religious grounds. What kind of secularism is this? This is vote back politics. The EC should take suo motu cognisance of this,” he said.

Democracy, Mr. Javadekar said, is all about voters casting their votes independently according to their conscience as he accused Ms. Gandhi of violating the model code of conduct.

“You (Ms. Gandhi) are practising communal politics and accusing others of being communal,” he said.

The BJP leader also took pot-shots at NCP president Sharad Pawar’s attack on the party and its prime ministerial pick Narendra Modi, saying Mr. Pawar was known for his “restraint” but has lost it off late.

“We would not like to comment of his comments which change daily,” he said.

He also attacked Congress leader Beni Prasad Verma and SP’s Azam Khan for their “abusive” remarks against Mr. Modi and said it reflected their “desperation” on the rising popularity of Mr. Modi.

“The more abusive they become, the more it will recoil on them as Modi has been accepted by the people as their leader,” he said.

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