BJP chief Amit Shah has been slammed by the Congress and several other opposition parties for dragging political discourse to a “new low” after his recent remarks. At the Mumbai rally on BJP’s Sthapana Diwas , Shah reportedly equated parties trying to join hands against the BJP to ‘snakes, ‘mongoose, ‘dogs’ and ‘cats’.
The CPI and the TMC also hit out at Shah for his remarks, saying one does not expect this from the president of a national party in power.
Anand Sharma said the remarks were “shameful” and reflected Shah’s mindset. He was reacting to remarks by Shah during a Mumbai rally to mark BJP’s Foundation Day.
Shah said, “The countdown for 2019 (polls) has begun. Attempts are being made for opposition unity. When huge floods occur, everything is washed away. Only a ‘vatvriksha (banyan tree) survives and snakes, mongoose, dogs, cats and other animals climb to save themselves from the rising waters.”
“Due to Modi flood, all cats, dogs, snakes and mongoose are getting together to contest polls,” the BJP president said, in apparent reference to the efforts being made by various parties such as the TRS, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) and the TDP to sew up a coalition to take on the Modi-led BJP in the next general elections.
Later, Shah said his intention was not to equate opposition parties to animals.
Congress leader Sharma said, “The remarks made by Amit Shah are condemnable. It shows their mindset. They have repeatedly dragged the political discourse to a new low.”
“It is shameful. What else do we expect from them? It is in their DNA,” he told PTI.
Congress communications in-charge Randeep Surjewala said Shah considers his political opponents as ‘dogs and cats’ and that is due to arrogance that has reached his head.
“Mr Shah, floods bring devastation and so does the Modi-Shah duo – For distressed farmers’, unemployed youth’, SC/ST’s’ and small traders and businessmen’.”
“Don’t forget, fury of the floods is temporary. We’ll build bandhs’ of friendship to stop it forever,” he tweeted.
Mr. Shah, Floods bring devastation & so does the Modi-Shah duo -For ‘distressed farmers’, ‘unemployed youth’, ‘SC/ST’s’ and ‘small traders & businessmen’.
Don’t forget, fury of the floods is temporary. We’ll build ‘bandhs’ of friendship to stop it foreverhttps://t.co/6zwbuul8Iv
— Randeep Singh Surjewala (@rssurjewala) April 6, 2018
CPI leader D Raja said this is not the language one expects from the president of a national party. “He is also a member of the Rajya Sabha and he should remember that we are all democratic parties. People of this country will give a befitting reply,” he said.
Trinamool Congress leader Derek O’Brien said he has used “sickening language”. “Of course we are political rivals, can we expect such language from the national president of the party in power? Basic courtesy? Too much to ask for?” he said.
National Conference chief Omar Abdullah tweeted, “Did the BJP President liken the Hon PM to a natural disaster?”
Later, addressing a press conference, Shah said, “What I meant was political parties having no ideological similarities are coming together out of fear of Modi.”
He was responding to questions over his remarks. “Snake and mongoose have nothing in common. Let me take names: Samajwadi Party and BSP, Trinamool Congress and Congress, Chandrababu Naidu and Congress, they have nothing in common and no ideological similarities, but are coming together,” the BJP president said.