Congress protecting Afzal, the real maut ka saudagar

Written by Mukesh Ranjan | Amreli (Gujarat), Dec 7 | Updated: Dec 8 2007, 04:40am hrs
Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi on Friday lambasted the Congress and its chief Sonia Gandhi for protecting Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, whom he termed as the real maut ka saudagar (merchant of death).

Speaking here at a public meeting in Lathi constituency, which is considered to be the nerve center of Saurashtra and where dissidents under the stewardship of former CM Keshubhai Patel have gone all out to defeat Modi in the state, he interestingly chose not to speak against them.

Going all-out in accusing Sonia Gandhi and the Congress for going soft on terror and that too particularly with Islamic terrorism, Modi lamented, as he said, Look who is calling me maut ka saudagar. Do you believe what Sonia Ben is saying... Actually, the case is other way round, she is protecting the maut ka saudagar. She is not allowing the Parliament attack convict to be hanged.

During his half-an-hour long speech, Modi also talked about the achievements of his government and asked he people if they wanted continuation of development in the state, they should come out and strengthen his hands by casting votes in favour of the BJP.

Saurashtra is the region, which comprises of six districtsAmreli, Rajkot, Bhavnagar, Junagarh, Jamnagar and Porbandarwith 52 Assembly seats. In the last Assembly elections the BJP romped home with 39 seats riding Patels wholehearted support, which constitute about more than 50% of the total electorate.

For Modi, the toughest battle is here this time around as the community leaders under Keshubhai have rebelled.

Interestingly, most of the sitting MLAs of the region, who left BJP have been accommodated by the Congress. In total 28 of them are in direct contest against the new faces of the BJP.

Because of Congress latching on the rebels, the scenario in the region has become a bit complex, as the BJP has been feeling the heat of dissidence from within.