The Congress on Monday described the BJP manifesto as a “copycat job and a laundry list of disconnected ideas” even as the Left dismissed it as a “dangerous mix of Hindutva and corporate power.”
The Congress also moved the Election Commission against the BJP, charging it with violating the model code of conduct by bringing out its manifesto on a day when polling for Lok Sabha elections was underway and seeking votes in the name of religion by mentioning the Ram Temple at Ayodhya.
Congress spokesman Abhishek Manu Singhvi said the BJP’s talking of minority welfare was like having “Dracula as the head of a blood bank.”
Accusing the BJP of being a “copycat”, Congress general secretary Shakeel Ahmed said: “Imitation is the best form of flattery. We are fully flattered. They have copied so much that they have even copied the date of the release of Congress manifesto.”
Meanwhile, CPM leader Prakash Karat said: “BJP manifesto is communal and divisive. It shows how dangerous the mix of Hindutva and corporate power could be.”
In a statement, the Aam Admi Party said the most worrying part of BJP’s manifesto is the reiteration of their communal agenda.
The manifesto also evoked a sharp reaction from All India Muslim Personal Board (AIMPLB), which had been pursuing the Babri Masjid-Ramjanmabhoomi case in the Supreme Court.
Even though the BJP’s commitment from its earlier hard-line sloganeering “Mandir wahin banayenge” (will construct temple there only), now seems to be considerably mellowed down, the Babri Masjid lobby has questioned its resolve about the construction within framework of the constitution.
Talking to HT over phone the AIMPLB general secretary Maulana Nizamuddin said “the party like in the past has once again raked up the issue for vote bank politics”. He said issue was pending before the Supreme Court and everybody should wait for the final verdict.
The secretary general of the board, Abdur Rahim Quereshi, however added, “once the BJP comes to power it could try to construct Ayodhya temple on the pattern of Somnath Temple and the language used in the manifesto indicated in this direction.”
Babri Masjid action committee convenor Zafaryab Jilani also said that “it is illegal and against constitution.”