New Delhi: BJP on Wednesday targeted Rahul Gandhi for dragging the name of RSS ideologue MS Golwalker in his reply to the Election Commission on his controversial speech on Muzaffarnagar riots and said instead of playing appeasement politics he should answer the opposition`s charges.
BJP also underlined that the EC notice to Narendra Modi on his "khooni panja (bloodied hand)" remark against Congress was not a violation of the Model Code of Conduct.
"The Election Commission has cautioned Rahul Gandhi on the comments made by him about the Muzaffarnagar riots. He is very clearly promoting the communal card. BJP feels his reply to the EC goes on the same tenuous path and is a left-handed kind of reply," party spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman said.
The EC is not satisfied with Gandhi`s reply to its notice and has expressed displeasure over the "tone, tenor and content" of his speech on the riots. The panel has observed that parts of the speech were not in consonance with the letter and spirit of the Model Code.
BJP criticised Gandhi for quoting Golwalker in his reply, saying the Congress leader should instead read the RSS ideologue`s writings as it would benefit greatly by imbibing his teachings.
"Gandhi should stop playing appeasement politics and using the communal card. He should answer questions being raised by Narendra Modi and the BJP on corruption and development issues. There is no point in him and the Congress skirting their failures," Sitharaman said.
BJP insisted that Gandhi needs to clear the air on opposition charges of government failure to deal with corruption, border encroachment by China and other issues flagged by Modi.
Sitharaman, however, declined to comment on the EC`s observations, saying it is not her "business to do so".
Asked about the notice to Modi, BJP said it will reply to the EC within the stipulated time.
"What is alleged to be a violation of the Election Code of Conduct by Modi, I would like to say with certain conviction that the Laxman Rekha set by the EC has not been violated. We will look into the matter with all due care. We shall respond in accordance with the law," she said.