Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has compared fellow BJP leader and his Gujarat counterpart Narendra Modi with Sardar Vallabhai Patel, known as India’s iron man, drawing a sharp rebuke from the Congress.
“The stature and work of Shri Narendra Modi can only be compared with Sardar Patel,” Chouhan tweeted.
Chouhan’s tweet came ahead of Modi’s mega rally in Hyderabad where he virtually kicked off the BJP’s election campaign for the 2014 general elections. Modi addressed a youth conclave at the LB Stadium in Hyderabad on Sunday.
Sardar Patel, also a statesman from Gujarat, was the country’s first home minister and deputy prime minister and is credited with forging a united India after the British left.
The Congress, however, took strong exception to the comparison with senior leader Rashid Alvi saying said that it tantamount to “severe disrespect” to the freedom fighter.
“If anyone compares Narendra Modi to Sardar Patel, I believe it is disrespect to Sardar Patel. Sardar Patel spent his life in jails for the independence of this country,” Alvi said.
“Sardar Patel was not merely a minister, he was not merely the deputy prime minister, he was a big freedom fighter. This kind of comparison is extremely unfortunate,” he added.
Alvi also took a dig at the BJP saying that “As far as the question of Narendra Modi becoming prime minister goes, I have maintained that only the BJP can see these far-fledged dreams which can be never realised or have any possibilities of being realised. No one else but the BJP can do this.”