Nagpur, Nov 22 (IANS): Apprehending defeat in the ongoing elections in five states, the Bharatiya Janata Party is targeting the Associated Journals Ltd., which runs the ‘National Herald’ newspaper, and the Congress leadership, the party's Maharashtra unit said on Wednesday.
In a scathing attack on the BJP, state Congress chief Nana Patole said that the top party leaders, including President Mallikarjun Kharge, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi, are getting tumultuous response in all the five states going to the hustings.
However, in contrast, the masses have shown their backs to the BJP leaders, including meetings addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and the picture emerging is that the BJP may be rejected in all the states – Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram – said Patole.
“The desperation of the impending defeat has disappointed the BJP government, which has resorted to action by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) against the National Herald. All the documents in the case are in the public domain, and the whole country is aware of the truth,” Patole said.
He said the Centre has been hounding the AJL ever since it came to power 10 years ago. Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi were recently summoned by the ED, but it found nothing against them, and even the current action is merely a ‘diversion’ from its impending rout in the five states.
"Nobody from the Gandhi family or any of the AJL directors get salaries or profits from the company, and so the BJP’s allegations of ‘scam’ are totally without basis. But the people of the country have seen through its falsehoods, and even the ED cannot save the BJP for long,” said Patole.
To a query, Patole said that when Rahul Gandhi was speaking at an election rally in Rajasthan, the crowds were chanting slogans of ‘Panauti, Panauti’ (ill-omen), and when he spoke about it he never took the name of Modi.
"Why is the BJP reacting so strongly in the matter? How is it an insult to Modi? During the ICC World Cup final in Ahmedabad, the word ‘Panauti’ was trending on social media, and still continues. It’s an expression of public sentiment, but the BJP feels that it refers to them,” said Patole.