First deal with Rahul 'insult' over lawmaker ordinance, Modi tells PM
Reacting to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's charge that BJP was lowering the quality of political debate, Narendra Modi on Monday said he should first think of his "insult" by Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi, who had rejected his ordinance on convicted MPs as "nonsense".
"The dignity of PM's post was shattered. Who did it? Who has insulted the entire Cabinet? Who has humiliated the entire Parliament. The party of which you are so proud of and that party which has made you sit on the PM's chair, that party's vice-president had the audacity of calling your decision nonsense," Modi said at an election rally here.
Modi was referring to the matter of the ordinance, now revoked, which was cleared by the Union Cabinet with an intention to nullify a Supreme Court order prescribing immediate disqualification of an MLA or MP if convicted in a court of law.
Gandhi had termed the ordinance "complete nonsense", saying it should be "torn up and thrown away".
"No BJP member has committed the sin or caused the humiliation that he (Gandhi) did by tearing up the paper of a decision which was taken democratically.
"Those with whose blessing you are occupying the (PM's) chair have conspired to show you down in front of billions of people," Modi said.
Modi, the BJP prime ministerial candidate, said Gandhi's comments were like a "slap on the (PM's) face" while he had been on a US visit.
"Tell us Prime Minister, have we done this? If you cannot say anything against them, then don't, but do not blame us for this," Modi said.
Modi further alleged that "Shahzade" (Gandhi) had lowered the dignity of democratic institutions.
"Recently, he (Gandhi) said BJP is chor (thief)... The country knows that when the last Parliament session was on, there were slogans of "Chor, Chor"... You also asked if the opposition in any other country calls its PM Chor?" Modi said.
Gandhi had last week had dubbed BJP a "party of thieves" during an election rally in Chhattisgarh and accused it of "looting natural resources" in that state.
"Is this kind of behaviour right? If you say we are thieves, then we accept this charge... We have committed theft. We have stolen Congress's sleep," he said.