BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad slams Congress for "twisting" what was said.

A day after Narendra Modi’s “puppy” analogy, while referring to the 2002 Gujarat riots, triggered wide condemnation, the BJP rushed to defend the Chief Minister, who will lead the party’s campaign for the 2014 general elections.

BJP spokesperson and Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ravi Shankar Prasad on Saturday said: “The Congress is in the habit of twisting facts about what Mr. Modi has to say. They are also in the habit of digging at his popularity and impeccable integrity.”

Mr. Prasad said: “Now it is clear that there is some kind of hatred against Mr. Modi, but the more they [Congress] seek to hate him without any basis, [the more] Mr. Modi's popularity is going to rise among the people of the country.”

The BJP leader said the Congress and others were scared of Mr. Modi's popularity, impeccable integrity and record of governance. “What he has said [in an interview to Reuters] is, every creature is worshipped in India and anything wrong happens it is a matter of sadness.”

Criticising Minority Affairs Minister K. Rahman Khan’s proposal to set up a special task force to oversee terror cases against Muslims, the BJP said the Congress once again demonstrated its intention to divide India on religious lines.

Spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi said: “A false perception is sought to be created that Muslims are being targeted in false cases by the Gujarat government when far worse false cases are pending against innocent Hindus. Even charge sheets have not been filed in some cases and they continue to be under illegal detention by the Congress governments.’’

‘More fake encounters in Congress States’

Citing the National Human Rights Commission data, she said: “The Congress, in its greed for power, is misquoting facts about encounters. The NHRC data shows that there are more fake encounters in Congress-ruled States and secondly more Hindus have been killed in fake encounters. The myth-making and perpetuating industry is compromising societal and national interests.”

“The NHRC data suggests that out of 1,262 complaints of fake encounters received since 1993, mostly Hindus were killed and in 203 cases Muslims were alleged to have been killed,” Ms. Lekhi said.

The BJP charged that Christians were targeted in north-eastern States through illegal detentions by the Congress governments.

“The BJP objects to any attempt to discriminate Sikhs, Hindus and Christians in terror cases and letting them languish in jails thereby selectively targeting non-Muslim communities.” Ms. Lekhi alleged that the Congress ensured that Muslims could never prosper. That was why their plight had not eased so many years after independence.

“The Congress, along with a coalition of corrupt parties, has sought to create a false sense of insecurity amongst minorities and thereby hampered mainstreaming of all citizens,” she alleged. .

Bangalore Staff Reporter reports:

In Bangalore, Mr. Rahman Khan said Mr. Modi’s remarks on the Gujarat riots only exposed his frustration. The Gujarat Chief Minister’s statement showed his “contempt for the Muslim community” and he should not have stooped so low. The Minister said Mr. Modi himself appeared to have “doubts about his credentials as a nationalist.”

More In: National | News