JALAUN/SULTANPUR: Turning up the heat in his UP election campaign, Prime Minister Narendra Modi eased up a bit on Akhilesh Yadav and switched his attention to BSP chief Mayawati -- and she replied in kind.
Exercising his talent for new acronyms, he coined one for BSP. It stands, he said, for Behenji Sampatti Party. It was a none-too-subtle dig in the ribs, an allusion to the wealth allegedly amassed by Mayawati during her years as CM of UP.
The lady gave it back, fashioning an acronym of her own out of the PM’s full name, Narendra Damodar Modi. She called him Mr Negative Dalit Man.
The PM’s dig at Mayawati came at a rally in Jalaun in Bundelkhand region, where the BSP holds some ground. The allusion to wealth was a take-that for Mayawati’s criticism of demonetization, which has become a big issue in this election.
“She says we were not prepared and people should have been given at least a week’s time before the enforcement of the note ban. I want to ask her if we were not prepared or it was she who needed time,” the PM asked.
“Behenji’s brother’s account was made public and Rs 100 crore was deposited in it after the note ban,” he said.
Lumping the SP and Congress with the BSP, he called them birds of the same feather (ek hi thaili ke chatte batte) who ganged up against him as they did not get time to stash away their wealth. "Where has Bahujan Samaj Party reached today? When I announced the note ban on November 8, SP and BSP, who never see eye-to-eye, came together. I was amazed. They came together and started speaking the same language," Modi said.
In an immediate rebuff, the BSP chief, while addressing a public rally in Sultanpur, hit back at the PM calling him anti-Dalit. “Modiji is unnerved by the BSP wave sweeping the state so he is indulging in personal attacks,” she said.
She claimed that the BSP is a party that runs on small contributions by small people.
"He (Modi) is an expert in jumlebaazi (rhetoric) but when he will get a tit-for-tat reply he will forget all about it and today I have been compelled to do the same for him," Mayawati said.