Guwahati, April 13 (PTI: Former Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Saturday said the “control of the RSS” over the BJP is gradually decreasing due to the “one man show” of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Alleging various violations of the model code of conduct, the senior Congress leader also said the Election Commission is not functioning effectively in having a free and fair polling.
“It is well known that the RSS has a control over the BJP, but we are seeing that slowly it is decreasing, mainly because of the one man show of Modi,” Gogoi told a press conference here.
Leaders of the saffron party nowadays do not say “BJP government”, but use the phrase “Modi government”, in an attempt to give an impression that only he is running the government, he said.
“Modi is creating an indispensable image of himself for the party… His dictatorial behaviour and one man show is a concern for all,” the former CM said.
Stating that the Lok Sabha polls in 2019 is the most important in Indian democracy so far, he said that the BJP is trying to create a president’s rule type of situation in the entire election environment.
“We are against the hatred and communal role of the RSS. The Indian culture and Hindu religion is full of diversity, but still people are united. Modi wants to destroy that. That is why this election is very important,” Gogoi said.
Gogoi also slammed Union minister Maneka Gandhi for her reported statement that there will be no jobs for Muslims if they do not vote for her.
“It is a very corrupt and communal statement. It is communal threatening. Her candidature should be cancelled and the election there should be set aside,” he asserted.
Criticising Union minister Smriti Irani, too, for “contradictory declarations” over her educational qualification in affidavits in the last few elections, the Congress leader said even Modi gave “false affidavit” over his marital status.
“He should be sent to jail… The way the Election Commission should have played its role, they are not doing so,” Gogoi said.
Taking exception to the increasing role of corporates in politics, he said even the Supreme Court had to intervene, and ordered declaration of all funds received through the contentious electoral bonds, which brought “windfall benefits to the BJP the most”.
“The most corrupt party is the BJP. With the ‘chowkidar’ in the party, how come it became the richest party? Even Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal is running the most corrupt government.
“How is the BJP able to afford so many helicopters and chartered flights in this campaign in Assam?” he asked.
He also alleged that the Assam BJP is trying to get votes with money power, and pointed to the unverified videos of cash distributions among voters in the run up to the Lok Sabha elections in the state.
“Many prominent leaders of the anti-Citizenship Bill protests recently joined the BJP. There is no such big movement demanding ST status to six communities compared to those in our tenure. Why is it so? Because the BJP has purchased everyone with their money power,” Gogoi claimed.
He challenged Sonowal for an open debate on Assam’s development, and alleged that state Finance Minister and NEDA Convenor Himanta Biswa Sarma as the “most corrupt of all the BJP leaders”.
Talking about politicisation of the armed forces, Gogoi said Modi wants to win the elections, riding on the achievements of the Indian Army.
“This has forced so many veteran defence officials to appeal to the President for stopping politicisation of the armed forces. Modi is nervous today. He is going to lose,” the Congress leader said.
He also asserted that there is no ‘Modi wave’ in 2019 compared to 2014.
Regarding Assam, Gogoi said the Congress will win at least eight seats out of the 14 in the state.
In 2014, the BJP won seven out of 14 Lok Sabha seats in Assam, the Congress and the AIUDF had three MPs each and one member was an Independent. The two BJP allies, BPF and the AGP, had no representation in the Lower House of Parliament.