The Congress and the BJP continued with their attacks on each other on Monday. Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram targeted the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi, and refuted the BJP’s claim that the SIT, which investigated the 2002 Gujarat riots, had given him a clean chit. “The SIT gave its report to court. The first court accepted it, but it has now been challenged in the High Court. The final word has not been said as yet. I am not pronouncing anyone guilty or innocent. But the SIT report being accepted by one court is not a clean chit.”
Responding to Mr. Modi’s insinuation that Congress president Sonia Gandhi had a hand in the Italian marines being allowed to leave the country, Mr. Chidambaram said: “Mr. Modi has deep character flaws. He can't resist derogatory remarks and perverse characterisation. The fact is that the case is with the Supreme Court, it is for the court to decide.”
The BJP hit back at the Congress, saying it had asked the Congress questions why inflation and unemployment were high and also on the state of internal security, but there was no response.
“Mr. Chidambaram said the NDA government’s record of employment was good, but during the UPA’s tenure, unemployment rate was down. How is that possible when the economy’s base is so weak?” BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad asked.