Narendra Modi on Thursday accused Sonia Gandhi of resorting to “rabid communalism” by appealing to Muslim leaders to ensure their votes are not split and sought Election Commission’s action in this regard.
Against the backdrop of Ms. Gandhi’s meeting with Shahi Imam of Jama Masjid Syed Ahmed Bukhari where she had made the appeal, Mr. Modi said, “Congress is sensing defeat. So now, their slogan has shifted from secularism to rabid communalism.
“What she said yesterday... I appeal to the Election Commission... Asking for votes on the basis of communalism is against the rules of Election Commission as the polls have been announced,” he said.
Mr. Modi was addressing a public meeting in support of BJP candidates from Indirapuram in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad district on the outskirts of the national capital.
“24 hours have passed and the news has already appeared in the media. Why is EC not taking suo motu action in this regard?” he asked.
From the same platform, he also sought votes for the candidate from neighbouring Gautam Budh Nagar avoiding the jinxed town of Noida, where there is a popular belief that leaders who visit the town lose their positions.
On Wednesday, Ms. Gandhi rejected the BJP charge that she was playing politics of communalism saying they were not in the habit and game of polarising elections.
“Sonia has made the mistake of trying to mislead and divide the nation. People will never forgive this kind of politics. For Congress, secularism is religion first but for us it is India first,” he said.
“For Congress secularism is an election slogan. For us every community is ours. For Congress secularism is vote bank politics, for BJP, development is national agenda. For Congress, it is a political weapon, for us it an article of faith,” he added.
'Give us nothing less than 300 seats' : Modi
In his election campaign in Kurukshetra, Haryana, Mr. Modi called upon voters to give a decisive mandate of at least 300 seats to the party so that it could provide a stable government at the centre.
Addressing a big gathering in this historic land of the Mahabharat , Mr. Modi said: “I want you to give us a decisive mandate. Let at least 300 lotus (election symbol of the BJP) bloom. I promise you that I will give you a very stable government.”
“You have given 60 years to these people (Congress). You can give me at least 60 months and see. You can do at least this for me,” Mr. Modi said.
Modi alleged that it was the Congress that was stalling all attempts to bring back black money worth trillions of rupees from foreign bank accounts.
“It is the Congress which is opposed to bring the black money back. If we come to power, we will have a law in place and I will do everything to ensure that the money stacked away in foreign banks is brought back,” Mr. Modi said to a thunderous applause from the gathering.
Mr. Modi also took on Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, raking up the controversy over the land deals of Mr. Gandhi’s brother-in-law Robert Vadra.
Without naming anyone, Mr. Modi said that Congress leaders had blackened their hands in the coalgate scam.