In response to Congress president Sonia Gandhi referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a 'shahenshah' while retorting to allegations levelled against her son-in-law Robert Vadra, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday said the grand old party is not able to digest the fact that a 'chaiwala' (tea-seller) has risen to become the Prime Minister of the nation.
BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra lashed out at the Congress president, saying her remarks were 'absolutely deplorable'.
He added that the Congress needs to understand what 'shahenshah' means, as it is they who have run the country 'like their fiefdom' during their decades-long rule.
"A shahenshah is the person who considers this country and the party as their fiefdom. And who other than Gandhi's can be called shahenshahs. They have been ruling this country as if this country was their fiefdom. Mrs. Indira Gandhi was responsible for the emergency in this country. That is shehenshah-ism. That is dynasty rule," Patra told ANI.
He said that Prime Minister Modi has risen from a humble background to the top post because of his hard work and blessings of the people.
"As far as the Prime Minister is concerned, he is a poor man. He is a chaiwala who has risen gradually because of his hard work. Because of the blessings of the people of India he has become the PM of India," Patra said.
"When a poor man becomes the PM of the country, it is very difficult for the dynasts to digest it and that is the reason as to why out of frustration Mrs. Gandhi and the Congress party are making such kinds of allegations," he added.
Echoing similar views, BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain said that the 'Shahenshah' and 'Shehzada' culture exits in the Congress party, adding that the Prime Minister is the 'pradhan sevak' of the country. He said that instead of congratulating the BJP for their achievements in the last two years, the Congress is criticising them.
"The nation is developing, farmers are happy and foreign exchange reserves are on a rise, but Congress and Sonia ji can't see all this. Sonia ji is calling Modi ji a 'Shahenshah', she should know that on the first day itself he (PM Modi) had said that he is 'pradhan sevak' (prime servant). The Prime Minister is serving the nation as a 'pradhan sevak' of mother India," he said.
"Shahenshah and Shehzada culture exists in Congress and not in the BJP. The Prime Minister is duty bound to prevent wrongdoing, no matter who it is?," he added.
Retorting to allegations levelled against her son-in-law Robert Vadra that a controversial arms dealer bought a 'benami' or proxy-owned mansion in London for him in 2009, Sonia Gandhi earlier said that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi led-NDA government is resorting to new lows everyday to achieve their target of 'Congress free India' and dared the Centre to launch a probe.
Gandhi further castigated the two-year bash celebrated by the NDA cadre and termed the event which took place at India gate last week as unethical.
"I have never seen anything of this sort in my entire life. A prime Minister is a Prime Minister not a Shahenshah (emperor). At a time when the nation is reeling under drought and is suffering from poverty, such celebrations are not ethical," Gandhi said.
According to reports, Vadra is being probed after Income Tax raids on arms dealer Sanjay Bhandari revealed alleged links between the two and cryptic references to a London property.
However, Robert Vadra's lawyers have outrightly denied the charges.
Last month, enforcement agencies raided 18 sites owned by Bhandari. After which it divulged in its reports Vadra and his executive assistant exchanged emails discussing nitty-gritty's for an accommodation in London (12 Ellerton House, Bryanston Square) bought for 19 lakh GBP (Rs 19 crore) in October 2009 and sold in June 2010.