New Delhi: BJP on Friday ruled out any rethink on Narendra Modi as its PM candidate, notwithstanding the raging controversy over the snooping on a woman by Gujarat Police, dubbing the matter as a "conspiracy" by a "panicky" Congress which was "hitting below the belt".
Party leader Nitin Gadkari also said that it was the right and the privilege of the Chief Minister to maintain surveillance and claimed Congress Chief Ministers too do it regularly. He also alleged that the Congress at the Centre "misuses" CBI and the IB.
"There is no need. It is a 100 per cent Congress conspiracy to malign Modi by using the Intelligence Bureau and the CBI," Gadkari told PTI when asked whether there has been rethink in the BJP on the PM candidate in the wake of the snooping row.
Congress, he alleged, has been resorting to politics of character assassination by targeting opposition leaders in a "below the belt manner".
His refrain was that the Congress has turned "panicky" due to growing popularity of Modi and was playing "low level politics out of frustration".
"Marta kya nahi karta (One who is drowning tries to clutch to anything)," he said referring to Congress and the tactics adopted by it.
Gadkari`s remarks came on a day when Congress demanded resignation of Modi as the Gujarat Chief Minister over the alleged illegal surveillance of the woman by state agencies and sought a probe by a sitting Supreme Court judge into the issue.
Senior Gujarat Congress leader Shaktisinh Gohil also claimed that Modi had "very close" relations with the woman.
He said he had acquired information through RTI on "how public exchequer was misused to benefit the victim of the snooping" and threatened to reveal it if Modi denied the charges.
"I am not doing so now because the RTI information has the name of the woman which I don`t want to reveal."
Gohil also alleged that a "compromise" was arrived at later and the state government allotted a "big project in Gandhinagar running into crores" to a company run by the woman in which two of her brothers were directors.