Refusing to be on the back foot over allegations against its president Nitin Gadkari, Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday suggested that he was being framed as Congress was facing serious charges of corruption and said he was the only leader to have volunteered for a probe by any agency.
Launching a counter-attack on the Congress at a poll rally in Sundernagar, Himachal Pradesh, BJP leader Sushma Swaraj said Congress has set "new records" in corruption and linked it to steep rise in prices.
"The central government has only two accomplishments -- breaking the back of the common people and breaking records in corruption. The price rise is due to the wrong policies of the government and corruption indulged in by it," she said.
Referring to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's remark that "money does not grow on trees", the Leader of the Opposition in Lok Sabha said, "Pradhan mantriji money does not grow on trees, but money is found in the pockets of Congress leaders."
Referring to allegations against Gadkari, she said, "When Congress leaders' faces were blackened, they decided to malign us also and accused our national president Nitin Gadkari. But he did not sit at home. He faced the media alone and replied to all charges made against him.
"He is the only leader to have volunteered for a probe into the allegations against him from any agency, even though these agencies are controlled by them (government)...He is confident that he will not be found guilty," she said.
"We come out with pride, they do it with shame," Swaraj said chiding at the Congress leaders embroiled in scams.
She said the government has turned inimical towards corruption and scams and has indulged in scams on the ground, above it and even below it - reference to CWG, 2G and coalgate scams which totalled up to Rs 4.38 lakh crore.
Urging people to take a conscious decision during polls, she told them to make a comparison between the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre and the Dhumal-led BJP government in the state before casting vote.
"You have to choose between a government working for people and the one which is corrupt," she said.
Swaraj also lashed out at Congress leader Virbhadra Singh for corruption charges against him and called upon the people to pat Dhumal for the good work done by him. She also urged rebels in the fray to return to the party-fold.
Swaraj, who also addressed an election meeting at Baddi, said the capping of subsidised LPG cylinders to six a year had proved to be the last straw on camel's back.
Listing out the achievements of the BJP government in the state, she said the party has promised to provide induction plates free of cost to reduce the pressure due to high LPG prices and cap on the number of subsidised cylinders.
She said it was surprising that Virbhadra Singh, who resigned from the Union Cabinet after charges were framed against him in a graft case, has been picked up by the Congress to lead the party's campaign in Himachal Pradesh.
Lauding the performance of Dhumal government in Himachal Pradesh, she claimed BJP was sure to return to power.
Image: Leader of Opposotion in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj