Indore: Congress leader Raj Babbar kicked up a political row on Thursday by launching a personal attack at Prime Minister Narendra Modi and comparing the devalued rate of the rupee to his mother’s age.
“He (PM Modi) used to say that the Indian rupee has fallen so much against the dollar that it was nearing the age of the then prime minister (Manmohan Singh). Today, the rupee’s valuation has dropped so low, that it is inching closer to your beloved mother’s age.” Babbar said at a poll rally in Indore. PM Modi’s mother Heeraben Modi is 97 years old.
Actor-turned-politician Babbar also called PM Modi ‘manhoos’ (ill-omened) over a steep rise in fuel prices. Referring to his remarks during the 2014 elections when PM Modi said he is lucky so the petrol and diesel prices would fall once he comes in power, Babbar said: “Main to kahunga aap mahamanhoos hain jo aapke raaj me petrol-diesel ke daam itne badh gaye.”
The BJP has demanded an apology from Babbar and said that making such comments is below its dignity. “Congress is stooping low, below its dignity and making nasty comments. One should maintain dignity in politics. I condemn this. Comparing Rupee vs Dollar to the age of Modi ji's mother shows his (Raj Babbar) mentality. He should immediately issue an apology,” Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani said.
Senior BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain, who was also in Indore, said: “We never named former PM Manmohan Singh’s mother. Those who are not in politics should not be dragged into political issues.”
In counter attack, Congress spokesperson Pankaj Chaturvedi blamed the BJP for the downfall of language in Indian politics and said the BJP used improper words for Manmohan Singh in the past. “I wish to know what kind of objectionable words Raj Babbar used in his speech?” Chaturvedi said.