The Congress on Thursday said it was happy that there was a voice other than its own puncturing Narendra Modi’s development myth: the reference was to Aam Aadmi party chief Arvind Kejriwal’s ongoing tour of Gujarat, during which he was critical of the many deficiencies in the State, which the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate has held up as a model for the rest of the country.
“Where the AAP is being useful is in opening the eyes of the people, [providing] a voice other than the Congress in showing the deficiencies of the Gujarat’s so-called model of development, puncturing the myths unleashed by the marketing gurus of Gujarat,” Congress leader Shashi Tharoor said. He was replying to a question whether the AAP was beginning to occupy the Congress’ space in the State.
“The Congress party wants Gujarat to develop,” he said, stressing, “Our only concern is that Mr. Modi is pretending a number of things which are simply not supported by the facts .... I think he [Kejriwal] is helping the Indian people by making the public aware of the reality behind the myths that Mr. Modi’s marketers have been applauding ... If Kejriwal’s antics have helped draw attention, we welcome it. We welcome Indians being well-informed before casting their votes.”
Mr. Tharoor, however, criticised Wednesday’s clashes in which AAP workers were involved with BJP men as an instance of the “forces of violence and hatred” countering the “forces of anarchy”: “It was a revelation to the nation of the kind of alternative politics that awaits it,” Mr. Tharoor said.