The Telegraph
Tuesday , April 29 , 2014
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BJP offers Dal ‘dip’ to Farooq

New Delhi, April 28: The BJP today suggested a “dip in the Dal” and worse for Union minister Farooq Abdullah, who had remarked on Sunday that those who vote for Narendra Modi should “drown in the sea”.

Continuing the battle of repartees that has become a staple of these elections, BJP leader Arun Jaitley blogged that Abdullah should take a dip in the Dal lake to “repent” for allegedly keeping mum when Kashmiri Pandits cannot return to the Valley.

“India will vote Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister. Nobody needs to jump into the sea because of that. But if Farooq Sahib and his party are silent spectators when the Kashmiri Pandits cannot go back home, he should, as a gesture of repentance, at least take a dip in the Dal lake,” Jaitley wrote in his blog.

The Gujarat chief minister’s office also joined the battle. “If somebody has to drown, then you should look at your (Abdullah) face in the mirror. Put your father’s face in front of the mirror and ask this question. Those who have chased Kashmiri Pandits out have no face to preach against communalism,” Modi said in a video message.

At Sunday’s rally, Abdullah had said that Kashmir would not remain with India if it becomes communal. Modi today replied: “Kashmir is the only place in this country where Pandits were evicted because of their religion. Kashmir was the land of Sufi traditions... and it has been tarred with communal colour by you for selfish interests.”

At the BJP headquarters in Delhi too, the attack continued. BJP spokesperson Nirmala Seetharaman asked why the Jammu and Kashmir Constitution still did not have the words “secular republic”.

“Very clearly, Dr Abdullah first has to answer as to why in Jammu and Kashmir the constitutional amendmentů (of) 1976 making India into a secular republic is not acceptable to him there,” she said.

Jaitley also took a dig at Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s statement that the BJP was behaving like “baukhlaye huye choohe” (befuddled rats).

“If any of my family members started referring to my opponents as rats and reptiles, I surely will be a worried man,” Jaitley wrote in his blog.

He said Priyanka — she has broken her silence on the BJP’s continuing attacks on husband Robert Vadra’s alleged land deals — had lowered the quality of the political discourse.

“Language provides a facility where even sharp comments can be made in a dignified manner,” he wrote.

Seetharaman, too, commented on the land deals: “Ironically, Congress spokespersons, instead of giving clarification on the issue, throw challenge back at the BJP to register an FIR and inquiry... the studied silence of Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi leads to suspicion that they have something to hide,” she alleged.

She said that as soon as the model code of conduct was lifted, the Rajasthan government would order a probe.