After Sonia Barb on Bharatiyata, Modi Calls It 'Paid News' - The New Indian Express

After Sonia Barb on Bharatiyata, Modi Calls It 'Paid News'

Published: 16th April 2014 07:23 AM

Last Updated: 16th April 2014 10:13 AM

Close on the heels of yet another televised opinion poll predicting a clear majority for the BJP and its new allies, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, anchoring an unprecedented late night spot-ad aired on Hindi TV channels, warned the electorate of the “divisive, autocratic” ways of the opposition party, which could “ruin the Bharatiyata, Hindustaniyat” as the country has known since time immemorial.

“We want unity. They (BJP) want to impose uniformity. They say, ‘Just believe in Me’… Their vision is clouded with hatred and falsehood, their ideology (is) divisive and autocratic,” Sonia said in her televised address late on Monday evening.

She called this LS election a battle over the “heart and soul” of India, which she said the opposition party, if it comes to power, will seek to change and “divide” the country on communal and sectarian lines.

Since such as a frontal attack could not have gone without retaliation, Tuesday began with BJP president Rajnath Singh retorting that the Congress president has to “first figure out what is Bharatiyata” and then preach. The hint was obviously at Sonia’s foreign origin.

This was followed by BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar and senior leader Arun Jaitley variously terming Sonia Gandhi’s three-minute ad-spot as a “desperate bid” to engage with the electorate or “a farewell speech” whereby she was accepting defeat not just of her party, but also the failure of her son’s campaign.

But the man towards whom Sonia’s warning was directed did not leave it to others to do the talking. Narendra Modi accused the Congress president of taking recourse to “paid news”.

Addressing a rally in Madhya Pradesh, Narendra Modi said, “All of a sudden Sonia Gandhi has come to the fore to take charge of the election campaign. She had thought that her son would do something. But when nothing happened, what could she do? The mother herself had to come to the fore, appear on TV to deliver advertised messages to the nation.”

Modi, who has himself been ribbed by opponents, critics and even by BJP veteran L K Advani of “marketing” himself by spending lavishly on his campaign infrastructure, went on to accuse the Congress president of taking recourse to “paid news”.

“You must have seen this paid news. They have lots of money, they can buy TV (channels), they can buy time on TV and tell what they want to say,” he quipped.

The fact that 122 crucial seats in UP, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Odisha were going to polls on April 17 and 24, has both the parties up against the wall. It should be noted here that a lot is at stake in UP, where the next round of polls will take place in 23 seats where minority vote is as high as 30 per cent.


Also Read:

'Modi Spending Rs 10,000 Cr on Campaigning'

Sonia Has Given 'Farewell Speech': BJP


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