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Priyanka Gandhi’s video with children sets up row. Smriti Irani has a view

In this video, the children are initially seen repeating the Congress’ election campaign slogan, Chowkidar chor hai, for a bit.

lok sabha elections Updated: May 01, 2019 14:54 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
The video of Priyanka Gandhi was cited by Union Minister Smriti Irani to launch a new attack on Priyanka Gandhi who is overseeing the party’s campaign in 41 Lok Sabha seats of eastern Uttar including the two where brother Rahul and mother Sonia Gandhi are candidates.(PTI)

A 12-second video of Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi with a group of children excitedly shouting slogans has set up a fresh row. The video was cited by Union Minister Smriti Irani to launch a new attack on Priyanka Gandhi who is overseeing the party’s campaign in 41 Lok Sabha seats of eastern Uttar including the two where brother Rahul and mother Sonia Gandhi are candidates.

In this video, the children are initially seen repeating the Congress’ election campaign slogan, Chowkidar chor hai, for a bit. Priyanka Gandhi appears to encourage them. But then, the children switch to another slogan that uses an abusive word in Hindi. Priyanka Gandhi promptly cups her mouth in surprise.

“Uncouth to the core,” Smriti Irani tweeted, quoting the video. “Imagine the filthiest of abuses that a Prime Minister has to endure from people whose only claim to fame is a nose. Lutyens outrage anyone????” the Union minister who is contesting against Rahul Gandhi from Amethi added.

Watch | Priyanka Gandhi’s video with kids raising anti-Modi slogans goes viral

Some people responded by tweeting a longer 28-second version of the video, which shows Priyanka Gandhi disapproving use of abusive language for PM Modi.

“Yeh wala nahin (Not this one),” she is seen telling them in this version. “Achhe bachhe bano,” she says.

Also Read | In east UP, Congress banks on Priyanka Gandhi in triangular contest

Saral Patel, convenor of the Congress’s social media cell, who had put out the longer version of the video, rebutted Smriti Irani.

“Lying through the teeth is embedded in your DNA, Please stop sharing clipped videos. Priyanka Gandhi discouraged the kids very next moment they raised these slogans and said “Achhe Bachhe Bano”. Stop faking everything like your degree!” he said.

Smriti Irani is focusing on Amethi seat from where she is contesting against Rahul Gandhi a second time. She had lost the 2014 election but did succeed in reducing the Congress president’s victory margin from 3.7 lakh in 2009 to just a little over 1 lakh in 2014. This time, the BJP insists it would be able to breach the Congress bastion that voted the party in all parliamentary elections since 1980. The BJP also claims that Rahul Gandhi contested from a second seat in Kerala this time because he had seen the writing on the wall.

First Published: May 01, 2019 14:14 IST