'Verma's remark truthfully describes prevailing situation within Congress': BJP
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Saturday said Dewas MP Sajjan Singh Verma's remark that Congress leaders don't venture out of their air-conditioned offices and cars was more of a confession than an allegation, and added that it truthfully described the prevailing situation within the ruling party.
"It is more of a confession on part of a Congress Member of Parliament than a statement that Congress leaders are normally confined to either the TV studios or to the AC rooms and their connectivity with grassroots and ground level workers is virtually nil," said BJP leader Balbir Punj.
"So, those who have seen UPA-II working and their ministers and Members of Parliament operating they will find that he is speaking the truth. And it is more of a confession than an allegation. So, this is a statement, which truthfully describes the prevailing situation within the Congress Party," he added.
BJP leader from Bihar, Giriraj Singh, also echoed similar sentiments on the issue, and said that Verma spoke the right thing.
"He is absolutely correct. The people from RSS work life lime for the upliftment of the society. What the Dewas MP has said is the result of the Congress regime of over six decades that poor became poorer and rich became wealthier," Singh told mediapersons in Patna.
"They (Congress) have encouraged their family members only. And that is why they have been away from the common people and their policies reflect this thought and now their MPs are also saying so," he added.
Addressing a workers meeting at Neemuch in Madhya Pradesh earlier on Thursday, Verma told the party workers to ignore elderly leaders who have crossed the age of 60 and concentrate on party national president Sonia Gandhi, AICC general secretary Rahul Gandhi and the Congress flag.
"Party leaders sitting in New Delhi are running their own show. Some are MPs and others are ministers. Ask them to tour the state to campaign for the party and they don't even come out of their air-conditioned offices and vehicles," said Verma.
"Those leaders who have crossed the age of 60 years should retire. The party has given them a lot and it is time for them to serve the Congress party unconditionally and without any interest. Aged leaders are like heritage monuments. They may collapse and crumble anytime. Now that Rahul Gandhi will take over the reins of the party, the youth should be permitted to come forward," he suggested.
Verma also compared the Congress to the RSS. He said that while Congress leaders don't venture out of their air-conditioned offices and cars, the RSS workers eat only 'chana' and campaign for the BJP in the remote rural areas.
The Dewas MP, however, retracted from his statement later, saying the media misquoted him.