Nothing Personal Against Deve Gowda: Rahul After B-Team Remark
Rahul Gandhi, addressing a rally in Hassan, had called the JD(S) the “B-team of the BJP.”
Congress president Rahul Gandhi said he had nothing personal against former prime minister and Janata Dal (Secular) chief HD Deve Gowda.
Speaking to Deccan Herald, Gandhi said:
I have not attacked Deve Gowda. In fact, Mr Deve Gowda has been the prime minister of the country. I have nothing personal against Mr Deve Gowda and I am not attacking him personally. I am making a very simple statement. The central fight in Karnataka is between the BJP ideology and the Congress ideology. And Mr Deve Gowda has to be clear. He has to tell the people of Karnataka, is he on this side, or on that side. That is the extent of my question to Mr Deve Gowda. I think Mr Deve Gowda owes it to the people of Karnataka upfront to say that he is either on this side or that side.
Gandhi, addressing a rally in Hassan, had called the JD(S) the “B-team of BJP,” eliciting a strong response from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Congress said Gandhi had not shown any “disrespect” towards Gowda, as alleged by Modi.
Hitting back, the party said it was Modi who “disrespected” his two predecessors (Manmohan Singh and Gowda) and sought an apology from him for it.
There is no disrespect expressed ever towards Deve Gowda by Rahul Gandhi... it is not the Congress culture to insult.Deputy Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Anand Sharma
Sharma alleged there was an "opportunistic understanding and unholy nexus" with the JD(S) that the prime minister and BJP chief Amit Shah had sought and created. That was the reason a question had been asked and criticism levelled, he said.
He insisted that Modi apologise for repeatedly insulting former prime minister Manmohan Singh who was “one of the most respected elders, leaders and statesmen.”
Gowda Downplays PM's Praise
A day after Prime Minister Modi lavished praise on him at an election rally in Karnataka, Deve Gowda on Wednesday, 2 May, sought to play it down, saying it did not mean both parties were cosying up to each other.
Gowda also slammed Chief Minister Siddaramaiah for suggesting that his party would back the BJP. He claimed that it was Siddaramaiah who wanted to become chief minister in 2004 with the support of the saffron party when he was with the JD(S).
Virtually endorsing Modi's criticism of Rahul Gandhi for having 'insulted' him, the JD(S) supremo also said a Kannadiga had become prime minister and "Siddaramaiah tried to demolish Kannadigas' pride.”
"This is how the Congress gives respect to Kannada pride," Gowda, who was the prime minister heading the United Front government at the Centre during 1996-97, told a press conference in Bengaluru.
Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.