Launching a counterattack on Jnanpith recipients U.R. Ananthamurthy and Girish Karnad, who have come together to oppose its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, the Bharatiya Janata Party on Friday described them as “flatterers” of the Congress.
“The manner in which these writers have chosen to support the Congress and oppose Mr. Modi reminds us of flatterers in the erstwhile princely courts. Is it proper for Jnanpith recipients to become flatterers of the Congress?” BJP State spokesperson S. Suresh Kumar remarked at a press conference in Bangalore.
A section of prominent litterateurs, including several writers had on Thursday announced that they would form a forum, Samakaleena Vichara Vedike, to oppose Mr. Modi on the grounds that he is a “threat to the country’s pluralistic culture”.
Targeting Prof. Ananthamurthy, who had earlier remarked that he would not like to reside in the country if Mr. Modi became Prime Minister, Mr. Kumar said he had a “blind hatredness” towards Mr. Modi. His remarks indicated that he would not accept the people’s mandate if they bring Mr. Modi to power, he said.Lashing out at Dr. Karnad for questioning BJP national general secretary Ananth Kumar’s contribution to Bangalore, he claimed that the BJP leader had played a crucial role in the getting clearance for projects such as Namma Metro.
Speaking on the occasion, BJP MLC and Kannada writer Doddarange Gowda pointed out that Dr. Karnad had held the position of director of the Nehru Centre in the Indian High Commission in London during the NDA government. “Why was the BJP not untouchable to him while enjoying power then,” he asked.