Cat analogies fly as Mallikarjun Kharge slams Assam CM with ‘Modi ka chela’ jibe

| Updated: 21 January, 2024 9:04 pm IST

NEW DELHI: Congress Chief Mallikarjun Kharge launched a scathing attack against Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Sunday, attributing an assault on the party’s Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra in the state. He also called Sarma a ‘chela’ (disciple) of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Pointing to Sarma’s prior ties with the Congress before his BJP switch, Kharge remarked, “Our own cat is now meowing at us.”

The comments come in the wake of an attack on the Yatra and allegations of stones thrown at Congress General Secretary Jairam Ramesh’s convoy in Assam.

Addressing a rally in Assam’s Nagaon, Kharge accused Sarma of attempting to instil fear in the people to secure victory in the upcoming elections.

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“Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra will traverse 15 states. The previous Yatra covered the stretch from Kanyakumari to Kashmir, and there were no incidents of stone-pelting or intimidation. Why is this happening in Assam? Because he (Assam CM) is the ‘chela’ of PM Modi. He follows Shah’s directives. He intimidates the Dalits, minorities, and backward classes of the country. By sowing fear, he is strategising for the next election,” Kharge said.

He attributed the attack on the convoy to the BJP’s anxiety, stating, “Rahul Gandhi’s Yatra is progressing smoothly. Witnessing this, BJP members are anxious. Hence, they assaulted our PCC president. However, he is not one to be easily frightened.

“He is a Congress soldier. Congress will not succumb to fear. This is akin to ‘meri billi mujhse hi myaoon’ (my cat is meowing at me). We have encountered several such individuals. We will never be intimidated; this is the promise of the Congress.”

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh recounted that his vehicle was targeted by “an unruly BJP crowd” in Jamugurihat, Sunitpur.

Meanwhile, Rahul Gandhi alleged that the Assam government had cautioned the public against participating in the party’s Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra. “They (government) believe they can intimidate and suppress the people. However, they fail to realise that this is not Rahul Gandhi’s Yatra. It is a journey for the voice of the people,” he said.

Gandhi further accused Sarma and his family of being the most corrupt in the country, stating, “Everyone knows that the CM and his entire family are the most corrupt. The Assam government operates for the benefit of one family…” Earlier in the day, Sarma claimed that Gandhi was apprehensive of him and his son.

Sarma had switched from the Congress to the BJP in 2015 and is credited with establishing the BJP as a significant political force in the northeast.

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