Citing Sadhvi Pragya's Remarks on Karkare, Ahmed Patel Accuses BJP of Double Standards
Ahmed Patel predicted that the BJP and its allies will not get more than 200 seats in the Lok Sabha polls.
File photo of senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel.
Ahmedabad: Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel on Saturday hit out at the BJP's "double standards" for talking about fighting terrorism and then giving tickets to those who are criticising martyrs.
He was speaking in Rajkot against the backdrop of the BJP's Bhopal Lok Sabha candidate Pragya Singh Thakur, an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, claiming that former Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad chief Hemant Karkare died in the 26/11 Mumbai attacks as she had "cursed" him.
The remarks caused a furore, forcing BJP to distance itself from them, and compelled Thakur to issue an apology on Friday evening.
Slamming the BJP on the Thakur episode, Patel said, "The BJP has given tickets to such people. What message do you want to convey? On one side, the BJP talks about fighting terrorism. And those who are actually fighting terrorism are being criticised by BJP candidates."
"Why these double standards? There is huge difference between what the BJP preaches and what it actually does," the Rajya Sabha MP from Gujarat asserted.
He said while the BJP spoke about fighting terrorism, it was the Congress' leaders who had laid down their lives opposing it.
"After the Mumbai terror attack (on 26/11, 2008), our chief minister (of Maharashtra) and Union home minister had tendered their resignations. We fought the terrorists and captured Kasab (who was later hanged)."
Praising Karkare, Patel said, "What is Pragya Singh saying today? A man (Karkare) who sacrificed his life fighting terrorists is now being criticised and even termed a traitor by her."
Patel added that Narendra Modi will become ex-Prime Minister on May 23 when the Lok Sabha results are announced. He said public anger would ensure that the BJP and its allies will not get more than 200 seats in the April-May Lok Sabha polls.
"I am saying with full confidence, and also with pain because he (Modi) is from Gujarat and the country's PM, that when poll results are announced on May 23, Modi's name will have the prefix ex-PM," Patel said.
"It is very difficult for the BJP to win over 150-160 seats. I am confident the BJP and allies will not get over 200 seats," he said, adding that the Congress would win between 10-15 seats out of the 26 Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat.
The state goes to polls on April 23.
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