‘Do you have 100 heads like Ravan?’: Kharge's jab at PM Modi triggers political row ahead of Gujarat elections

Updated on Nov 29, 2022 07:02 PM IST

Gujarat chief minister Bhupendra Patel said that Congress preisident Mallikarjun Kharge's comment is “testimony to their hate for Gujaratis”.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
By | Edited by Chandrashekar Srinivasan, New Delhi

A fresh political row has erupted after Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge's 'Ravan' remark about prime minister Narendra Modi. The Congress veteran made the remarks during a campaign rally in Ahmedabad on Monday, days before the Gujarat Assembly election.

During the rally, Kharge said that Modi keeps aside his duties and work as the prime minister, and keeps campaigning in 'corporation, MLA, MP elections'.

Also Read | PM Modi a 'chieftain of liars', sympathy-seeker: Congress president Kharge

"In all these campaigns, he (Modi) only talks about himself. 'Don't look at anyone else, just look at Modi and vote'... how many times do we have to see your face? How many forms do you have? Do you have 100 heads like Ravan?" Kharge declared to laughter and cheers.

The Congress shared a video of the moment on Twitter.

The Congress chief's remarks did not go down well with Gujarat chief minister Bhupendra Patel. Taking to Twitter, he said that 'bereft to any development agenda and support from the people' of the state, the opposition party is 'out to abuse Gujarat and Gujaratis'.

"The statement made by Kharge ji against PM Narendra Modi ji is testimony to their hate for Gujaratis. People of Gujarat will reject them this time too for such behaviour," Patel tweeted.

Amit Malviya, the IT cell head of the BJP also fired back at Kharge saying that he lost 'control over his words' owing to not being able to 'take the heat of Gujarat election'.

"Unable to take the heat of Gujarat election, pushed to the fringe, Congress national president Mallikarjun Kharge loses control over his words, calls Prime Minister Narendra Modi 'Ravan'. From 'Maut ka Saudagar' to 'Ravan', Congress continues to insult Gujarat and it’s son…," Malviya's tweet read.

The 'maut ka saudagar (merchant of death)' phrase referred to former Congress president Sonia Gandhi's comment (ahead of the 2007 election) about the 2002 riots, in which she had targeted Modi - who was then the chief minister of the western state.

BJP's national spokesperson Sambit Patra echoed Malviya saying the Congress had not only insulted the son of Gujarat, but rubbed into the heart of every Gujarati.

"It is an appeal to all Gujaratis that the party whose president has insulted Modi should be taught a lesson. Gujaratis should come out of their homes in a democratic way and take revenge by voting against Congress," he said during a press conference in Delhi.

Congress hit back later, with leader Supriya Shrinate questioning how Malviya has the “audacity to call a man who comes from the most deprived background (Dalit community), who has won elections for the last 55 years - fringe”.

“We are proud of Kharge ji as Congress President, it’s time you stop your anti-Dalit tirade,” she tweeted.

Pawan Khera also asked why the BJP “can't digest the fact that a Dalit who has worked his way up is the ‘elected President of the Congress?” “Calling him fringe shows what you and your party thinks of Dalits,” he tweeted.

Gujarat, which is ruled by the BJP, is heading to polls in two phases on December 1 and 5. The counting of votes and announcement of results will be done on December 8. Considered a BJP's bastion for the party being in power in the state for more than two decades, the Congress party is aiming to make a comeback in Gujarat in this assembly elections.

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    A journalist with 7+ years of experience, I pretty much inhale and exhale news – figuratively speaking. Cooking, reading and playing with my dog take up the remaining hours of my normal day. I have an inclination for true crime stories, and love listening to such podcasts.

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