As state BJP leaders appear on posters, Congress says Narendra Modi, Amit Shah are ‘retreating’https://indianexpress.com/article/india/politics/as-state-bjp-leaders-appear-on-posters-congress-says-narendra-modi-amit-shah-are-retreating/

As state BJP leaders appear on posters, Congress says Narendra Modi, Amit Shah are ‘retreating’

Venkaiah Naidu is either making a threat to the electorate or is this an acceptance of defeat?... said Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi.

Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi
Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi

The Congress Saturday said the cancellation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rallies in Bihar and the inclusion of state BJP leaders on posters, billboards and hoardings, which earlier had only Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah on them, indicated that NDA’s defeat in the Assembly elections was inevitable.

“They have seen the writing on the wall and when you see the writing on the wall, you do not want your own face on the wall because you will then be held responsible as the twin lead campaigners for the disastrous result, which is bound to follow. Therefore, realising that discretion is the better part of valour, this is a strategic retreat by both Modi and Amit Shah,” Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said.

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“It is an acceptance of defeat but it is an avoidance of accountability for the defeat by saying that if we win, credit should go to Modi. Now that we know that we are losing, all the accountability and responsibility should not go to Modi or Amit Shah — so let us remove the posters,” he added.

Referring to union minister Venkaiah Naidu’s remarks that the outcome of the Bihar polls will have an impact on the reform agenda, he said, “Naidu is either making a threat to the electorate or is this an acceptance of defeat?… it has to be one of the two, there is no third option. If you lose electorally, you can hardly complain that I lose the state but I want the majority in Rajya Sabha. The combination of such statements and the very rapid, calibrated, orchestrated removal of several posters clearly establish the certainty of defeat in the minds and powers that be…”

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On Akali Dal MP Naresh Gujral’s remarks that the Dadri lynching incident was a “shame” for the country and the fallout was “damaging the PM more than anybody else”, Singhvi said, “It reflects the internal serious feeling that the ruling NDA, through a dictatorial approach of the ultimate dictator, is ramming decisions through.”

“There is no such ally as you say. It is me, my way or the highway — and this is what you see, whether it is Maharashtra’s so-called allies, whether it is Punjab’s so-called allies,” he added.