In provocative remarks, Congress leader and Union Minister Beni Prasad Verma has warned that Narendra Modi will be in jail in six months time if Rahul Gandhi becomes the prime minister. While dubbing Modi as a "dictator", he also launched a vitriolic attack on the opposition parties, saying it is the "duty of all Hindus and Muslims to guard the country and temple of democracy from dogs."
"Modi is a dictator and a dictator can never become the prime minister of this country...the Bharatiya Janata Party can do whatever it wants...keep making tall claims or buy the media but Modi will never be able to become the prime minister", Verma told mediapersons in Balrampur in Uttar Pradesh on Thursday night.
He said, "If Rahul becomes the prime minister of the country, Modi will be in jail in six months time as he is an accused in the Gujarat riots". Verma said several founder members of the BJP have been "humiliated" and "sidelined" after Modi's elevation in the party. Dismissing suggestions that a joint candidate will be fielded against Modi from Varanasi, he said a strong candidate will be fielded by the Congress from there and it would be decided soon.
Later addressing an election meeting in Itiyathok township of Gonda from where he is seeking re-election, Verma described Modi and Mulayam Singh of the Samajwadi Party as the biggest "enemies of secularism".
Facing competition from Akbar Ahmed Dumpy (BSP) and Masoor Khan (Peace Party) at a time when the BJP is confident of getting support of Hindus in the constituency, Verma, ostensibly addressing the sizeable Muslim population, said, "The country is like a temple of democracy and we all have to protect and guard it".
"It is the duty of all Hindus and Muslims to guard the country and temple of democracy from dogs (who are out to soil it)", Verma said. Beni noted that in these elections everyone is out to become the prime minister.
Referring to the lion and hyena barbs exchanged between Modi and Akhilesh Yadav, Verma advised the UP chief Minister to tell his Gujarat counterpart that "he would be given a goat of Etawah feeding on whose milk he (Modi) too would become a goat".
The Congress leader said though his party will not field candidates from Kannauj and Mainpuri (seats contested by the SP's Dimple Yadav and Mulayam), it will put up a candidate in Azamgarh (the other seat from where Mulayam is in the fray).