Launching BJP’s poll campaign here by inaugurating a tea stall, senior party leader M Venkaiah Naidu, who tasted the beverage for the first time, on Wednesday criticised Congress MP Mani Shankar Aiyar over his ‘tea vendor’ remark against Narendra Modi.
Naidu inaugurated the tea stall in Gandhinagar area in the heart of the city, after which he had a cup of tea there.
“I tasted tea for the first time in my life. I had never had it, as my elders always taught me that tea spoilt the health,” Naidu said.
The former BJP president then went on to criticise the Congress and its leader Mani Shankar Aiyar over his ‘tea vendor’ remarks.
During the recently held AICC meeting in Delhi, Aiyar had targeted Modi saying that a place would be identified for the BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate to distribute tea there.
“Congress party did not condemn Aiyar’s statement and instead supported it. His statement is an insult to thousands of tea vendors who have been surviving on self employment and also providing employment to several other people,” Naidu said.
“In the coming general elections, people would teach a lesson to the arrogant Congress leaders like Mani Shankar Aiyar, who insulted the tea vendors,” he said.
“In the 55 years of their rule, many Congress leaders were involved in several scams and corruption cases even as the country remained underdeveloped. The fruits of development have not reached the common man.
“The poor continue to remain poor, while the rich are getting richer under the Congress rule. This needs to be changed,” the former BJP president said.
He said his party would come to power to fulfil the ambitions of common man. “People want Modi to become the Prime Minister. They feel that a common man who was a tea vendor in his early days, should become the Prime Minister and not the person from Amethi,” the BJP leader said in an apparent reference to Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi.
“People are looking at the development in Gujarat and expect similar growth at the national level,” he said.