Stung by attack on Narendra Modi, BJP on Saturday hit back, saying the "helpless" Congress was using false propaganda to discredit its Prime Ministerial candidate even as it engages in Muslim appeasement for votes.
BJP President Rajnath Singh slammed the Congress, a day after Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi attacked Modi over his kind of politics.
Addressing the BJP National Council here, he lambasted the Congress for attacking Modi for unrelenting court cases and "lowly" remarks. "Congress is getting defeated in legal battles as well... Feeling helpless against the BJP and its PM candidate, Congress has resorted to propaganda and legal tangles... Congress is always trying to attack Modi using different tactics," Singh said.
Claiming that Congress has launched a tirade against Modi on basis of "lies and misinformation", the BJP chief referred to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s recent remarks that Modi becoming PM would be "disastrous" for the country.
These remarks were "irresponsible and highly condemnable.. His comments were neither based on facts nor dignified for a person who holds a constitutional post," he said.
Accusing Congress of indulging in false propaganda and vote bank politics, BJP said it has sought to discredit Modi through all means.
Turning to 2002 Gujarat riots, Singh termed these as "painful" and said the Modi government had taken stern and swift action against the rioters.
He said the SIT has given a clean chit to Modi in its report submitted to Supreme Court in 2011 itself and a few days back a court in Ahmedabad has dismissed all allegations against him, the BJP chief said.
Condemning Sonia Gandhi’s statement that BJP is a communal party, Rajnath Singh said it is the ruling party which is communal.
"I want to ask Sonia Gandhi as to which government's Prime Minister had said that Muslims have the first right on the resources of the country. It was Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. It is Congress which has tried to divide the country. It is Congress which is communal," the BJP chief said.
Pointing fingers at Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, he said the Hindu terror remarks were made by the Congress-led UPA government.
"Also, for the first time, a headcount in the defence forces was done on the basis of religion in this government," Singh said
Rajnath Singh claimed that Gujarat has become a model state under Modi’s leadership, despite which the Centre has continued its "witch-hunt" against him for the past 11 years.
"If a court absolves him (Modi) in one case then the government keeps some other conspiracy ready for him," he said.
The BJP President also targeted Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar for his comments that Modi will never become the Prime Minister in the 21st Century but can sell tea. "This shows a feudal mindset," he said.
He used Modi's tea vendor background to attack Congress over "dynastic" politics.
"There is internal democracy only in the BJP where a tea-seller can become the PM candidate while one engaged in farming can become the party president (referring to himself)," Rajnath Singh said. "You cannot even imagine this in the Congress where the president and other top posts can be held only by those born in a particular family," Singh said.