Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has again targeted Sonia Gandhi, this time over her return as the Congress chief after a three-month search by the party to choose a president, using the Hindi proverb "khoda pahad nikli chuhiya".
Addressing a poll rally in Kharkhoda on Sunday, Khattar launched a fierce attack on the Congress and the Jannayak Janta Party, asking the voters to show the door to these "family-based parties".
At the rally, Khattar said the Congress took three months to look for a national president outside the Gandhi family, but in the end, chose the family again and Sonia Gandhi became the interim chief.
"These family-based parties are there in the state and in the Centre too, what kind of 'tamasha' these 'Parivarvad' based parties are doing, you know it. Now, within the family too fights are taking place. On one side is Pappu and on the other side Mummy..," Khattar said.
"It was Pappu Chaudhary, he said he will not remain party chief after the Congress lost the Lok Sabha polls and Rahul Baba resigned as party chief. He then ask his party to look for new party chief the outside Gandhi family. We thought it was a good thing that they were moving away from "parivarvad" (dynastic rule). After all, we should appreciate good thing of opponents too," said Khattar.
"They started searching for national president throughout the country for three months and after that you know who became the chief--Sonia Gandhi. Again the same Gandhi family. 'khoda pahad, nikli chuhiya (much ado over nothing), woh bhi mari hui', this is their condition," the chief minister said.
A week ago, Khattar at another poll rally in the state, had accused the Congress of sympathising with terrorists and said its party president Sonia Gandhi "sheds tears for militants".
In the Kharkhoda rally on Sunday, Khattar also took potshots at the Congress, and said its former state unit chief Ashok Tanwar quit the party after levelling allegations that "tickets are being sold in the Congress".
He also took a dig at Congress over its manifesto.
"They have promised freebies for which Rs 1.25 lakh crore will be needed, which can never be fulfilled. They are making promises as if state's coffers are their 'Baap Ka Maal' (as if it is their father's property)," he said.
The JJP, which came into existence after a vertical split in the INLD, was also targeted by the chief minister.
"This party, Jhootee Jagda Party, will become the Jamanat Jabad Party as its candidates will lose badly," he said.
Targeting JJP leader Dushyant Chautala, he referred to him as "Gappu", saying he was only indulging in big talk and spreading lies.
Seeking votes for BJP candidate Meena Narwal, Khattar said the ruling outfit "gave clean and transparent administration and gave jobs on merit. We undertook equitable development without any regional bias."
The Congress on Monday slammed Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar for his "deplorable" remarks against Sonia Gandhi and demanded an unconditional apology from him.
Mahila Congress chief Sushmita Dev said Khattar's remarks against the Congress president are a clear reflection of his and the BJP's disrespectful attitude towards women.
"We in the Congress are committed to upholding the dignity in public life, But as a woman, I take offence to the disgraceful remark made and demand an unconditional apology," she said in a statement.
Dev said, "I strongly and unequivocally condemn Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar's remarks against Congress president Sonia Gandhiji. His remarks against the Congress president are deplorable and unparliamentary, it is a clear reflection of his and the BJP's disrespectful attitude towards women".
She said lowering the discourse is an attempt to divert attention from real issues that are being evaded, like joblessness and acute economic slowdown.
Can anyone deny that Haryana has become the rape capital of India, she alleged, adding that kidnapping and abduction are also on the rise.
The chief minister of Haryana, she said, has no answers to real issues that are adversely impacting the people of Haryana specially women.
The Mahila Congress chief charged that Khattar's "beti bachao gang" has failed as Haryana has the 4th highest crime rate in the country and there is a shocking shortfall in police manpower.