The Congress-BJP war of words over the Warren Anderson-Bhopal gas tragedy issue intensified on Monday.
The ruling party accused Gujarat CM Narendra Modi of targeting Sonia Gandhi to divert attention from his party’s flop show in Patna and ally Nitish Kumar’s snub in refusing to share the stage with him following the ad controversy.
“It is a cheap and blatant attempt to divert attention… BJP has alienated itself, not just from its allies, but also from the people of India due to divisive, disruptive and communal brand of politics practiced by leaders like Narendra Modi,’’ spokesperson Jayanthi Natarajan charged.
She described Modi as a “photo forger” who is “not only a communal polluter but also a chemical polluter” and demanded that he apologise for falsely using a picture to claim progress of Muslims in Gujarat.
“This is nothing more than a blatant attempt to distort and trivalise the sufferings of Muslims of Gujarat,’’ she said referring to his “state sponsored genocide”.
The BJP too had to answer for its “sins of omissions and commissions”, including why it did not seek Anderson’s extradition or why its then Solicitor General Soli Sorbajee changed his opinion on the extradition, she said.
Natarajan’s attack came even as BJP spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy backed Modi: “I do not think it is wrong to ask the Congress president and Congress government to reveal the maut ke saudagar (mechants of death) behind the gas tragedy.’’
Even if then Madhya Pradesh chief minister Arjun Singh got Anderson out of the state because of the law and order situation, Rudy said, he could not have gone out of the country without the knowledge of the prime minister or the external affairs minister, a porfolio that was held by Rajiv Gandhi.