Putting up a brave front amid Opposition's criticism of the midnight crackdown at Ramlila Maidan, Congress on Monday launched a no-holds-barred attack on Baba Ramdev and the BJP accusing them of trying to destabilise the government at the Centre.
At a time when there is talk about growing disconnect between the party and the government, the AICC also firmly backed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh with party general secretary Janaradan Dwivedi hailing him as the biggest Sanyasi (saint) in contemporary politics.
Making light of Ramdev and his fast, Dwivedi said, "One who calls himself a saint or monk should ask himself how many saints of the country are behind him. This is humilation to the real saints of the country."
"A Satyagrahi does not run away stealthily wearing women'dresses. Satyagrahi is always ready to sacrifice his life. Such a person is being compared to Mahatma Gandhi and Vivekananda. Gandhiji never said he feared for his life from the state," Dwivedi said taking a dig at Ramdev.
Launching a blistering attack on the BJP, which is seeking to make a big issue out of the Ramdev incident, Dwivedi ridiculed the fast of BJP leaders at the Rajghat today as also likening the police action at Ramlila ground to Jalianwala Bagh massacre.
"Some people are sitting on fast at Rajghat. These are those people, whose thought led to the creation of Rajghat Samaadhi before time. Gandhiji wanted to live for 125 years. But Rajghat came into existence much before," Dwivedi said.
Accusing BJP of trying to destabilise the Congress-led government at the Centre, he said, "After tolerating UPA-I and two years of UPA-II, they (BJP) are very uneasy about how to spend three more years (of UPA rule). Therefore, they are trying to spread chaos and anarchy any whatever manner they can and find a way out for themselves."
He termed Sonia Gandhi's refusal to accept Prime Ministership as "no child's play" and said, "There is no bigger Sanyasi in contemporary politics than the Prime Minister. Nobody can raise a finger at Manmohan Singh."
Dwivedi's statements, sharply critical of the BJP, RSS and Ramdev, came a day after Congress President Sonia Gandhi deliberated deeply over the strategy ahead after the police action against the yoga guru and his supporters.
The AICC general secretary, at the same time, steered clear of questions on whether the party endorsed the police action noting that the government and the party have different spheres of work.
In the backdrop of reports that Gandhi was critical of the midnight police action, his briefing projected that the government and the party are on the same page on the recent developments including Ramdev's fast.
"So far as policies and social issues are concerned, party takes a decision. So far as legal and official action and decision is concerned, they are taken by the government," Dwivedi said.
"Do you expect me to answer that?" was his terse response when asked whether there was any disconnect between the party and the government on the issue.
Asked if Ramdev was an RSS man, why four ministers of the Centre went to receive him at the airport, the senior Congress leader acknowledged "that very generosity was misused...the basic nature of the government is liberal."
He declared that Congress would fight tooth and nail the forces of anarchy and destabilisation.
Taking potshots at BJP over the fast, he said, "What kind of fast is this when the Leader of the Opposition is dancing along with her friends at Gandhi's Samadhi.
What is it they are celebrating. Is the celebration for putting forward Anna Hazare on the one hand and Swami on the other as their mask?"