With polling for the second phase of assembly election in Assam ending on Thursday, war of words between ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Opposition Congress reached new heights ahead of the third and final phase on April 6.
On Friday, BJP national president JP Nadda termed Congress as a communal party while Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi said the saffron party’s promises were like Chinese goods.
Nadda addressed three poll rallies in the state, but Gandhi failed to attend all her three rallies after her husband tested positive for Covid-19 positive and she had to stay in isolation. She addressed the meetings through video conference. A total of 40 seats would go to polls in the third phase.
“Congress is now going through mental bankruptcy and politics of opportunism. It has also become a communal party. I am saying this with full responsibility,” Jadda said Patacharkuchi, where BJP state president Ranjeet Kumar Dass is contesting.
“In Kerala, they are contesting in alliance with Muslim League, in West Bengal their partner is Abbas (Siddiqui of Indian Secular Front) and in Assam Badruddin Ajmal (president of All India United Democratic Front) is their brother,” he said.
Nadda termed Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra as political tourists and said they were busy visiting religious and tourist spots without having any idea of the problems faced by the people of Assam.
The BJP chief highlighted the welfare schemes launched for the tea-garden community by the Sarbananda Sonowal government and accused the Congress of failing to address the problems faced by the community.
Assam BJP chief Dass had won from Sorbhog seat in 2016, but decided to switch seats this time. “I won’t make any promises for the area, but can assure you that I will always be present to solve all problems of the people of the constituency,” he said.
Nadda addressed a rally at Boko later and followed it up with another election meeting in Guwahati.
Gandhi addressed her first rally, scheduled at Goalpara, through a video link shared with those present at the venue. “I wanted to be there with you personally, but due to circumstances, it didn’t happen. I thank you all for the enthusiastic response to our five guarantees and it reflected in the first two phases of polling. Even BJP leaders, including Prime Minister, are talking about it,” she said in an address from Delhi.
“Everyone knows that only one kind of goods come without guarantees and that is Chinese products. You buy it at the shop, but when you try to use it at home, you realise its quality. That is the same with the promises made by BJP,” she said.
She said the BJP made many big promises — like giving 2.5 million jobs, double income and bringing down inflation. “Now you see that there are no jobs and inflation is at its peak. All their promises turned out to be hollow,” she added.
She said that in the name of National Register of Citizens (NRC), the BJP harassed people and asked them to show documents to prove their identity and also went back on not implementing the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). She addressed two more rallies at Golakganj and Sarukhetri through video conference later in the day.