Priyanka Gandhi Vadra's entry into active politics has caused quite a stir in the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) with various party leaders taking pot shots at the newly appointed AICC general secretary in charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh.
Among the attackers is BJP MLA from Uttar Pradesh Surendra Singh, who is no stranger to making controversial statements. Comparing Congress chief Rahul Gandhi to Raavan and Priyanka to the demon's sister Surpanakha, Singh was quoted as saying: "You all are aware that when the war was about to start between Lord Ram and Raavan in which Lanka was won over, Raavan had first sent his sister – Surpanakha. It appears that in this war, Rahul is in the role of Ravana and Modi is playing the role of Lord Ram. Rahul, who is Raavan, has fielded his sister Surpanakha in the battle — now let us assume that Lanka is won this time as well."
Meanwhile, BJP MP Subramanian Swamy, also infamous for not mincing words, accused Priyanka of suffering from bipolar disorder and said she physically abused people. "The name of that disease is bipolarity, which reflects her violent character and overall image," he claimed, in a statement to ANI.
Many of the BJP leaders' attacks on Priyanka were also based on her physical appearance.
Senior BJP leader Kailash Vijayvargiya on Saturday said Congress was fielding "chocolaty" faces in Lok Sabha polls as it has a dearth of strong leaders. "A Congress leader demands that Kareena Kapoor should be fielded from Bhopal Lok Sabha seat. Sometimes others talk about fielding Salman Khan from Indore. Likewise, Priyanka (Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra) was also brought into active politics," Vijayvargiya told reporters.
Vijayvargiya's comments came amid controversy over senior BJP leader and Bihar minister Vinod Narain Jha's remark that Priyanka had no other quality except being "very beautiful" and the Congress should remember that beauty did not garner votes.
BJP MP Saroj Pandey joined her colleagues in attacking Priyanka as well. According to a report from NDTV, Pandey asked the Congress whether it was unable to find any other woman in the party who could be a general secretary. "What they found is a homely woman from the Gandhi family," she said.
Analysts have claimed that the decision to introduce Priyanka Gandhi ahead of Lok Sabha elections shows Congress' desperation. Congress has essentially shown its hand in the run-up to the polls, political analysts have said.
Congress hits back
Congress leader Sajjan Kumar Verma was one of the first to come out in Priyanka's defence, and lashed out at Vijayvargiya for his remarks: "We humans are the creation of the God and people should praise each and every one. It is not Priyanka’s fault if God has made her pretty. BJP should praise beautiful faces. By using such words for Priyanka, Vijayvargiya has lost respect and even disgraced his own party."
He also hit back at the BJP and said that the party uses actor and politician Hema Malini's cultural performances to earn votes. "The BJP has no nice and attractive faces. People don’t even praise the faces that the BJP has. It has only one good face of Hema Malini, whom the party makes dance on the classical songs to woo voters. Thus, Hema gives appealing dance performances to earn votes for the party."
Meanwhile, JD(U) MLC Ashok Choudhary condemned Jha's remarks and said: "This is definitely not a remark we would approve of. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has an undeniable charisma and aura which may or may not bring desired results in the elections. But the way she has been spoken about does not appear to be in good taste."
Congress MLA from Benipatti constituency Bhavna Jha remarked sarcastically, "Vinod Narayan Jha was defeated by me — an ordinary party worker — in the last Assembly polls. It is natural for him to feel scared of Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. He may be upset with Priyanka's beauty since he himself is not bestowed with good looks."
With inputs from agencies
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Updated Date: Jan 30, 2019 11:07:42 IST