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Congress drops restraint on Modi

New Delhi, Dec. 15: The Congress today lifted its self-imposed bar on personal attacks on Narendra Modi, probably because it found his recent observation on Sonia Gandhi’s “mental balance” too provocative.

“Modi is speaking the language of antisocial elements,” Congress media cell chief Janardan Dwivedi said.

But he immediately clarified: “I am not saying Modi is antisocial. But the language he is using is usually spoken by antisocial elements.”

Dwivedi claimed that Modi’s language betrayed signs of desperation as he was losing political ground in Gujarat.

Apparently referring to Modi’s remark that the Congress had failed to utilise Amitabh Bachchan as well as he had done, Dwivedi said such statements did not reflect a “healthy mindset”.

Modi would probably have exploited Dwivedi’s remarks to spice up his rhetoric, but campaigning ended in Gujarat today, two days ahead of Monday’s final round of polling.

From the start of the campaign till today, the central Congress leadership had avoided verbal battles with Modi though the party’s Gujarat leaders did often target him.

Sonia had refrained from any direct comment on the chief minister, and Rahul had dwelt on his political style without mentioning his name.

Invoking the Mahatma’s philosophy of tolerance and non-violence, Rahul had pointed to Modi’s aggression, anger and self-promoting discourse.

He had accused Modi of failing to heed the people’s voice and working to fulfil his own dreams, and stressed that Gujarat’s true heritage was the legacy of the Mahatma, not that of Modi.