New Delhi: Congress General Secretary Digvijaya Singh on Sunday slammed Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi over his criticism of the UPA government and challenged him to debate with any Congress leader on the issues of governance and development.
Digvijaya, a known detractor of Modi, also dismissed Modi's talk of inclusive politics, wondering can a leopard change its spots.
Soon after Modi addressed his NRI supporters via a video conference launched a full scale attack on the UPA, Digvijaya trained his guns on the BJP prime ministerial candidate through the microblogging site Twitter seeking to dismiss the criticism of the government by Modi and alleging that the latter was giving "fake figures" of growth during the NDA regime.
"Good to hear Modi talking about inclusive politics. But can a leopard change its spots? Feku Modi at his best. Giving fake figures of growth during NDA regime," Digvijaya tweeted.
Going interactive on the Internet medium, Singh also appeared addressing the electorate telling them, "Congress empowers you. Modi empowers himself. Choice is yours. Modi wants Congress free India but we want hunger free India! Modi backs priviledged, Congress backs underpriviledged. Choice is yours."
As Modi slammed the UPA government over various issues including slow growth rate, and said that people have lost faith in the UPA government, Digvijaya retorted that the UPA has fulfilled every promise made and empowered people by giving rights on information, education, Food Security and rights to women and tribals and also the right to work.
He was apparently referring to the UPA's schemes like RTI, RTE, Food Security, MNREGA and other similar right based measures taken during the two successive UPA governments.
"The list can go on. Would Modi have courage to debate with one of us on issues of governance, development and other national Issues?," he said.
Alluding to post-Godhara riots in Gujarat, corruption issues in some BJP-ruled states and cash on camera scandal involving a former BJP president in past, Digvijaya ridiculed Modi's claim that people are looking at the BJP to bring a positive change in the nation and wondered will it be "because thousands were killed in communal riots? Because rules were bent to favour the favourites! Because of Bangaru Laxman caught on camera".
The Congress leader was also acerbic in his criticism of the Gujarat Chief Minister over his praise of Atal Bihari Vajpayee. "Modi said Atalji's was a golden era because Modi didn't follow raj dharm? Parliament was attacked by terrorists? Terrorists were released?," Singh tweeted.
Praising the six-year tenure of NDA under the leadership of Vajpayee, Modi said, "Under Vajpayee government it looked like that the 21st century would be the century of India. But with his departure, the downfall started".