Is Nitish questioning Vajpayee`s competence, asks Cong

Hitting back at Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for his remarks against Rahul Gandhi, Congress on Monday reminded him that Atal Bihar Vajpayee too became the prime minister without being a chief minister.

Last Updated: Nov 01, 2010, 20:25 PM IST

New Delhi: Hitting back at Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for his remarks against Rahul Gandhi, Congress on Monday reminded him that Atal Bihar Vajpayee too became the prime minister without being a chief minister and wondered whether the former was questioning the competence of the BJP veteran.

"Even we are surprised at the statement of Nitish Kumar. Is he questioning the competence of Atal Bihari Vajpyee under whom he has served as a Union Minister for such a long time...even Vajpayee became the PM without serving as a CM of any state," Congress spokesperson Shakeel Ahmed told reporters here.

He was reacting to Kumar`s statement advising Rahul to first become a CM before aspiring to become the prime minister.

"I have a simple advice for Rahul Gandhi. Instead of giving lectures on development in Bihar, he should first become a chief minister to learn what governance is all about
before aspiring to be prime minister," the Chief Minister had said.

Ahmed said Jawaharlal Nehru, Lal Bahadur Shastri, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi are examples of prime ministers who were never Chief Ministers and are considered the best.

When asked why he did not name Manmohan Singh, the Congress spokesperson said he was only referring to the former Prime Ministers. "Manmohan Singh is still in office and we are proud of his leadership...we wish he continues in office for a long time," he said.

PTI