THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Speaking to reporters in Kozhikode on Monday, the Congress MP from Vadakara, Muraleedharan, attacked Tharoor saying Congress leaders who admire Modi in public can do it after joining BJP. He also urged party president Sonia Gandhi to take stern action against Congressmen who praise Modi.
The political war of words began following a tweet by Tharoor on Friday which said: “I have argued for six years now that @narendramodi should be praised whenever he says or does the right thing, which would add credibility to our criticisms whenever he errs. I welcome others in Oppn coming around to a view for which I was excoriated at the time!”
Other senior Congress leaders Jairam Ramesh and Abhishek Manu Singhvi had also recently said that attacks on Modi should be “issue-based” and not “person-based”.
Political observers said the strident attack on Tharoor in Kerala should be seen alongside the upcoming by-election in Pala, and other five assembly constituencies. “Congress can’t afford to be seen softening its stand on Modi,” said a party leader.
But another Congress leader felt the attack on Tharoor was bit over the board, and pointed out that the Thiruvananthapuram MP was one of the highly vocal leaders in Parliament when it comes to criticising Modi, while leaders like Muraleedharan and Prathapan remain silent in the House.
Muraleedharan and Prathapan also said Modi had been consistently attacking Congress leaders, including Jawaharlal Nehru, Rajiv Gandhi and Manmohan Singh, and it would not help the party if it goes soft on Modi.
“A respected personality like Manmohan Singh was severely criticised by BJP and Modi during the 10-year long reign of the UPA Government. Now people are praising Modi for building toilets across the country, but the same leaders during the time of election campaign had criticised him for not providing water to these toilets,” said Muraleedharan. Tharoor could not be contacted as he is in the Maldives.