New Delhi, April 14: The Congress today launched a campaign to counter the BJP’s offensive on Sonia Gandhi’s foreign origin by invoking the name of Mother Teresa.
“Mother Teresa was not born in India but she took Indian citizenship and served the people of the country. She received the Nobel Peace Prize as an Indian and made every Indian proud,” said J.K. Jain, a former BJP member, who is now part of the AICC.
“I have earlier worked with Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Now I am working with Sonia Gandhi. I am, therefore, in a position to make an objective assessment of both the leaders,” said Jain, a member of the Congress’ media cell, at a news conference today.
The BJP leadership has been relentlessly targeting Sonia and her son Rahul on the foreign origin issue. Recently, defence minister and Janata Dal (United) leader George Fernandes had said not only Sonia but also her children should be barred from occupying high positions in India.
Jain said the Congress campaign is to defend its president against the “falsehood, prejudices, hatred and venomous propaganda” launched by the BJP leadership, including the Prime Minister and his deputy.
The Congress cited personalities like Mother Teresa and Annie Besant who made great contributions to Indian politics and society.
But from all indications, the war of words over foreign origin is only going to escalate in the coming days.
Within hours of the news conference, BJP spokesperson Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the Congress has lost its “mental balance” if it was comparing Sonia to Mother Teresa. The Congress, however, made it clear it would continue to counter the BJP’s aggression on origin. It quoted Mother Teresa’s words: “I am an Albanian by blood. But by citizenship I am Indian.”