Hours after triggering a massive row by his remark ‘party gayi tel lene’, Congress President Rahul Gandhi's close aide and MP Congress Working President Jitu Patwari has issued a clarification over his statement. Patwari claimed that his statement was misinterpreted as he was talking to the BJP workers and asked them to forget their party and vote for him in the upcoming elections.
“The BJP and Congress workers speak to each other on various occasions. We live in a democracy. Bharatiya Janata Party workers can be our rivals but not enemies. When I would meet them and speak about votes and winning the elections, then I will obviously say to them that don’t care about your party, instead care for me,” said Jitu Patwari.
Earlier in the day, a video which has now gone viral featured Jitu Patwari meeting and greeting people in his constituency and can be heard saying, “Aap meri laaj akho, party gayi tel lene, meri izzat ka khyal rakho (You just take care of me. Dump the party, you just take care of my reputation).”
The leader got a lot of flak on social media as his statement came a mere 3 weeks before assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh. The timing of the statement was crucial also because it came just a day after senior Congress leaders Salman Khurshid and P Chidambaram allegedly gave a cold shoulder to party president Rahul Gandhi.
Salman Khurshid recently claimed that Congress can’t win 2019 polls on its own, followed by a surprising statement by P Chidambaram, who said that Congress never insisted on Rahul Gandhi as the Prime Ministerial candidate.
"The Congress party never said officially that Rahul Gandhi should be installed as Prime Minister. When one or two persons spoke about it, the AICC leadership asked them not to discuss the issue. We don't have an issue over Prime Ministership," said P Chidambaram.
Prior to this, senior Congress leader Salman Khurshid had in an interview claimed that it will be difficult for the Congress party to win on its own in the 2019 general elections. Khurshid stated that Congress needs allies to win and will have to make compromises for the same.
Salman Khurshid had said that any grand alliance must not be aimed at "containing Congress" and that all its constituents must make sacrifices and adjustments with the sole objective of defeating the BJP-led NDA.