Bengaluru: Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah continued his war of words with his Uttar Pradesh counterpart Yogi Adityanath on Tuesday, asking him to read what Swami Vivekananda has to say on cow slaughter before questioning his credentials as a Hindu for “promoting beef”.
Taking to Twitter once again to hit back at Yogi, Siddramaiah wrote in Kannada that the Hindutva he follows is “defined by the principles of Swami Vivekananda, and not those of Nathuram Godse”, who had assassinated Mahatma Gandhi.
“Before giving us lessons on gau-hatya, read what Swami Vivekananda says about the issue. This is what I ask of CM Yogi Adityanath,” the Karnataka CM tweeted.
In another tweet, he said, “Who are these people to question our food choices? A lot of Hindus eat beef. If I want to eat it, I will. Who are they to object to it? I don't eat beef only because I don't like it.”
The sharp retort came in response to the UP CM’s scathing attack against Siddaramaiah for his recent assertion that he was a Hindu at a mega rally in Bengaluru on Sunday.
“He cannot be a Hindu and promote consumption of beef. When the BJP was in power here, we enacted a law prohibiting cow slaughter. The Congress government repealed that law,” he said to loud cheers from BJP supporters.
Yogi said Siddaramaiah has only now remembered his Hindu roots because of the approaching election. "Siddaramaiah calls himself a Hindu just as Congress president Rahul Gandhi went to temple after temple during the Gujarat election," he claimed.
Siddaramiah had responded to the searing jibe with his own barb on Twitter, teaching Yogi about the Karnataka model of governance with a reference to a reported starvation death in UP.
In his tweet on Sunday, he welcomed Yogi to Bengaluru and asked him to tour the Indira canteens and other ration shops started by his government to “learn" from them. "It will help you address the starvation deaths sometimes reported from your state,” the Karnataka CM wrote, sharpening his attack as the state heads to a high-pitched election in April.
The barbs did not end there as Yogi was not the one to take the taunt lying down. He reminded Siddaramaiah that the “number of farmer suicides had been highest in Karnataka” during his tenure. “…not to mention the numerous deaths and transfer of honest officers. As UP CM I am working to undo the misery and lawlessness unleashed by your allies,” Yogi wrote.