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Raising the pitch in the final run-up to the Assembly elections in Delhi, BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi on Saturday took swipes at Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, claiming he had quit addressing rallies ever since people stopped turning up.
Modi compared Rahul to children taken to a zoo by their parents and shown a lion. He said Rahul is taken to a poor man’s hut and shown poverty. “Next year again, they will have to take him to a hut in case he forgets what poverty looks like,” Modi said at a BJP rally on the CBD grounds in Shahdara.
“People didn’t turn up for his rally, so Rahul quit addressing rallies. Unlike BJP leaders and CMs, the Congress has become so arrogant that they have not even thought of going to people to show them what their governments did,” he said.
Addressing three rallies in the city, Modi also took on Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party.
“A third shop has come from somewhere. When we saw Anna Hazare, we thought another Jai Prakash Narayan was here. But even he was devastated by some people's personal political ambitions. Ab yeh log toh jhadoo se loot tai hain (these people now use brooms to loot),” he said, referring to the AAP poll symbol.
But much of his attack was focused on the Congress. Referring to communal riots, he took on the governments of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh and praised his own state, Gujarat, for being riot-free state for years.
“Shehzada did not trust his own government. In Rajasthan, he preferred a motorcycle and rode pillion... than sit with his own chief minister to learn the truth. The Uttar Pradesh chief minister is a young man. Yet the state has seen 100 riots in less than one-and-half years. In Gujarat, riots used to break out even over a petty incident like cycles colliding. For years, Gujarat has been a riot-free state,” Modi claimed.
His attack was also directed at Sonia Gandhi and Sheila Dikshit. “Children of poor families sleep without food... Sonia Gandhi, you are a mother, and Sheilaji, a grand mother... please say a few words on rising prices. People want to listen.”
Taking a dig at Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, he addressed him as chairman of the Planning Commission that believes "anyone with more than Rs 26 a day is rich”. “He is an economist but he should know that you cannot get even two cups