A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi targeted the opposition over “politics of caste”, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Sunday said her party never made personal remarks against the PM and was fighting the ongoing Lok Sabha polls on the issue of development.
Speaking to reporters in Uttar Pradesh’s Amethi, the Congress general secretary said she doesn’t know Modi’s caste.
“Till today, I don’t know as to which caste prime minister belongs to. The opposition has never talked on these lines. The Congress is only raising the issue of development in this election, which are directly related to the people,” she said.
“As I had said, we have raised the issue of employment, farmers and security of women. We have been talking on these problems. We have never indulged in making personal remarks at him,” she added.
On Saturday, the prime minister had slammed the SP-BSP-RLD alliance in Uttar Pradesh, saying the tie-up of “opportunists” wants a helpless government because its mantra is “jaat, paat japna; janata ka maal apna” (play politics of caste and pocket people’s money).
“Mayawatiji (BSP chief), I am most backward…I request with folded hands not to drag me into caste politics, 130 crore people are my family,” he had said while addressing a rally in Kannauj.
“This country didn’t know my caste till my detractors abused me…I am thankful to Mayawatiji, Akhileshji (SP chief), Congress people and the ‘mahamilavatis’ that they are discussing my caste… I believe that taking birth in a backward caste is an opportunity to serve the country,” the prime minister had said.
Hitting back, Mayawati said the prime minister had included his caste among the backwards during his tenure as the Gujarat chief minister for political benefits.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Congress leader P Chidambaram and RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav also joined the war of words.
While Yadav called Modi a “fake OBC”, Chidambaram said he campaigned for becoming prime minister while wearing his caste on his sleeves.