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BJP slams Congress over 'toolkit'; latter hits back with police case

IANS | May 18, 2021 06:52 PM

NEW DELHI: A war of words erupted on Tuesday between the BJP and the Congress after the former accused the latter of using the Covid pandemic to malign Prime Minister Narendra Modi's image.

Hitting back at the BJP, the Congress accused it of propagating a fake ‘toolkit' and filed a complaint with the Delhi Police Commissioner against BJP chief J.P. Nadda, Union minister Smriti Irani and several others from the saffron camp.

"The ease with which those who raise questions are arrested under the Modi 'system', it would have been better if the vaccine would have been made available to them. Then the country would not have been in this painful situation today. Stop Corona, not the questions of the people, " former Congress President Rahul Gandhi tweeted.

The entire controversy erupted after BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra took to twitter on Tuesday and shared a page, saying, "Friends look at the Congress 'ToolKit' in extending help to the needy during the Pandemic. More of a PR exercise with the help of 'Friendly Journalists' and 'Influencers' than a soulful endeavour. Read for yourselves the agenda of the Congress: CongressToolKitExposed."

Levelling further allegations against the Congress and Rahul Gandhi, Patra tweeted, "Disgusting to say the least. Rahul Gandhi wanting to use this opportunity of pandemic to destroy the image of PM Modi. Congress workers were instructed to call the mutant strain as 'Modi strain'. No stone left unturned to scar the name of India with the help of Foreign Journalists."

Countering Patra's claims, Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera said while addressing a press conference here, "There are two ways of addressing questions and criticisms. Respond to questions and correct where you went wrong, and the second way is the BJP toolkit way -- attack those who are questioning you, resort to lies, forgery and fabrication."

He said the Congress has filed a complaint with the Delhi Police against Smriti Irani, J.P. Nadda, Sambit Patra, B.L. Santosh and others for circulating the fake toolkit by forging the letterhead of the Congress' research department.

Khera said, "Today we have seen the fabrication face of BJP as they forged the letterhead of the Congress research department."

The Congress leader also questioned the Centre as to how much effort will it make to spread lies and hide the truth.

Responding to Patra's tweet, the chairman of Congress' research department, Rajeev Gowda, said in a tweet, "BJP is propagating a fake toolkit on Covid-19 mismanagement and attributing it to AICC Research Department. We are filing an FIR for forgery against (BJP chief) J.P. Nadda and Sambit Patra. When our country is devastated by Covid, instead of providing relief, BJP shamelessly concocts forgeries."

Several ministers and top BJP leaders have also slammed the Congress over the alleged toolkit.

Irani took to Twitter and wrote, "My country, our country is at war with a virus. I can understand the opposition would want to attack the Govt. But to singularly commercialise it as a political opportunity & deal in death, I never imagined Congress was capable of such a low."

In another tweet targeting the Congress, Irani said, "Liaison for blocking beds in 'friendly hospitals' only to be released at the instructions of the High Command. Agusta (Westland) was not enough that they also started dealing with lives and deaths."

"Respond to help only if a person tags the IYC handle... understandable when 'death' becomes a vote bank, " she said in another tweet.

Union minister Piyush Goyal also slammed the Congress, accusing it of dividing the country and attempting to fracture the social fabric.

In a tweet, Goyal said, "Dividing India and attempting to fracture the Indian social fabric with communal hatred is Congress' second nature. Disgraceful to see the Congress party and its leaders engaging in political deception to mislead citizens and create roadblocks for the nation."

BJP national General Secretary and MP, Bhupendra Yadav, tweeted, "Instead of helping people fight Covid, Congress wants its supporters to use 'Indian strain' and 'Modi strain' when talking of the new mutant to malign the PM's image. This vulture politics is a new low even by Congress' low standards."

BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya tweeted, "It is brazen and shocking that at a time when India is fighting Covid, the Congress party is fighting India. All that it cares for at this point is to score political points, tarnish the Kumbh as a super spreader while play up Eid as a happy event."

BJP national Secretary Sunil Deodhar said in a tweet, "Is this not a toolkit of anti-nationals? Instead of fighting Covid, the agenda of Congress is to fight Modi and malign India by calling a strain ‘Indian strain' despite WHO rejecting the term. Worst kind of vulture politics."

BJP MLA from Mumbai, Ashish Shelar, pointed out that instead of helping the country fight Covid-19, the Congress has joined hands with the anti-national forces.

"Shame! Instead of helping Indians fight Corona, Congress joins hands with anti-India forces, anti-India media to 1.) Spread negative news and false propaganda against Indian government 2.) Run paid PR campaign to favour IYC (India Youth Congress), " he said.

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