Political exchanges between Congress and BJP today hit a low with the latter asking Rahul Gandhi to "grow out of diapers" after he took jibes at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying people will reduce his 56-inch chest to 5.6 inches.
BJP said the Congress vice president was no longer a "toddler politician" but his behaviour reminded that he remained "a baby in diapers".
BJP secretary Siddharth Nath Singh hit out at Gandhi at a briefing soon after the Congress leader attacked the Centre and Rajasthan government over a host of issues, including land bill and Lalit Modi scandal.
"He has to grow out of diapers he is wearing. His remarks, behaviour remind us that he remains a baby in diaper," Singh said as he raked up the alleged scams during the Congress-led UPA rule and controversial land deals involving Gandhi's brother-in-law Robert Vadra.
Apparently referring to a Lalit Modi tweet, the BJP leader said Gandhi should also speak about the likely "deal of 500-600 crore involving your (Rahul Gandhi) mother's sister".
"Rahul Gandhi has spoken about land, remote control and also 56 inch. As I said he is a toddler and it is not nice to give advise to a toddler. But Congress is giving him big responsibility so let us offer him an unsolicited advise. You have a right to criticise us. But criticise us on facts...
"You should assume a more constructive role. You wasted 10 years... From 2G, Coalgate, 'damadji', you have now come down to 'istifa ji'," he said tauntingly, referring to the opposition's demand for the resignation of some BJP leaders over their alleged role in Vyapam scam and Lalit Modi scandal.
Addressing party workers in Rajasthan, Gandhi had said "This 56-inch chest (of Narendra Modi) will turn into 5.6 inches in six months. And who will turn this into 5.6 inches, it is the Congress party, people of the country, the farmers and the labourers." Taking repeated jibes at the Vasundhara Raje government, he called it a "Lalit Modi sarkar".
Singh said "the 56-inch chest has been realised due to the blessing of crores of Indians" and Rahul should not dare measure it. "Or, it will prove costly," he said.
Modi had spoken frequently about "56-inch chest", a reference to strong leadership, during the Lok Sabha election and it has been used by Congress to taunt him.
Referring to Rahul's barbs at the Centre over land bill and his claim that Congress will not allow an inch of land to be acquired under it, Singh said he should also speak "about how Vadra managed to acquire so much land in Haryana".
On Rahul's remark that the Raje government's "remote" was with Lalit Modi in London, BJP spokesperson Nalin Kohli said, "Congress was used to running governments by remote control and believed it was a model. It is not so in BJP."