The ruling Samajwadi Party’s national convention here has become a podium for a “Modi-bashing” slugfest, with senior party leaders displaying dispassionate oratory in reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The three-day summit, which started on Wednesday, has seen Samajwadi Party President Mulayam Singh Yadav and powerful Cabinet ministers Shivpal Singh Yadav and Azam Khan fiercely attacking Modi.
While Mulayam was in his element on Wednesday, his younger brother Shivpal and Khan took the baton on Thursday. In his address to party workers, Shivpal said Modi was working towards the betterment of capitalists at the cost of the poor.
Shivpal flayed Modi for his visits to the US and Japan, saying that the prime minister was expected to serve his countrymen. Modi was busy touring offshore, but talked about sanitation on returning to India, he said.
Yadav said Modi was a crafty politician and was actually trying to snatch menial jobs away from the poor. Later, Khan sporting black tinted glasses and cap, tried to invoke the Gujarat riots to attack Modi. He criticised Modi for meeting foreign state heads, including China seeking investment and in the process allegedly compromising on the country’s honour.
On Wednesday, Mulayam and Janata Dal (United) President Sharad Yadav, who had attended the convention on invitation, had also targeted Modi. Mulayam had even invoked the “chappan inch ka seena” (56-inch chest) barb of Modi that gained much currency during the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.