Modi hints Pak interfering in Gujarat polls, seeks explanation from Cong
Palanpur: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday alleged Pakistan was interfering in Gujarat Assembly polls and sought an explanation from the Congress over its top partymen who are said to have recently met leaders from the neighbouring country.
Addressing a poll rally here, the prime minister also raised questions over the alleged appeal by the former director general of the Pakistan Army, Sardar Arshad Rafiq, that senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel be made the chief minister of Gujarat.
Modi said (former Congress minister) Mani Shankar Aiyar had called him "neech" (vile) a day after the alleged meeting of Pakistani leaders with top Congressmen.
"There were media reports on Saturday about a meeting at Mani Shankar Aiyar's house. It was attended by Pakistan's high commissioner, Pakistan's former foreign minister, India's former vice president and former prime minister Manmohan Singh," Modi said.
The meeting at Aiyar's house carried on for almost three hours, Modi said.
"The next day, Mani Shankar Aiyar said Modi was 'neech'.
This is a serious matter," he said. Modi added that Rafiq had backed Ahmed Patel as the next chief minister of Gujarat.
"(On one side) Pakistan Army's former DG is interfering in Gujarat's election, on the other side, Pakistan's people are holding a meeting at Mani Shankar Aiyar's house," he said.
"And, after that meeting, people of Gujarat, backward communities, poor people and Modi were insulted. Don't you think such events raise doubts," Modi asked. He said the Congress should inform the people of the country what exactly it was up to.
The Congress was quick to deny the charges and asked Modi's government to repatriate Pakistan's top diplomat in the country if he was indeed meddling in an Indian election.
Minutes later, Patel, Congress president Sonia Gandhi's political secretary, hit out at Modi. "It's a foregone conclusion that he has abdicated the politics of development in both action and words. But does it befit the stature of the Prime Minister to rely on canards, rumours & lies just for an election? This is very sad," Patel tweeted.