New Delhi: Accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of misusing public money and government podium to spread the BJP's propaganda and to attack the opposition, the Congress on Tuesday contested the "tall claims" of his government's achievements.
Strongly objecting to Modi using the 15th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas in Varanasi as a stage for election campaigning, Congress spokesperson Anand Sharma demanded the Election Commission's intervention.
"No Prime Minister in the history of India holds the record of wasting public money for election campaign. The Prime Minister is the BJP's chief propagandist and has used his entire tenure for the propaganda of BJP," Sharma said.
The Congress leader accused Modi of lowering political discourse to "gutter level".
Sharma claimed that Rs 6,000 crore had been spent in "Modi's propaganda" which included public sector undertakings spending huge money to carry out the government advertisements.
"Modi cannot use public money and resources and facilities that come with the Prime Minister's office to engage in political propaganda and berating the opposition.
"He is the first Prime Minister who is full of vitriol and ill will against the opposition, particularly the Congress, and has the dubious distinction of dragging political discourse to gutter level," said Sharma.
Ridiculing Modi's claims of India making rapid progress in all spheres under his regime, he pointed to the slumping economy and questioned why all economic parameters give a contrary picture.
"Instead of making tall claims, Modi must answer why are we losing jobs. Instead of creating them, 1.10 crore jobs have been destroyed because of his policies. Investments have fallen by 7 percentage points and gross fixed capital formation remains in the negative.
"He must answer why exports are slumping and why there is flight of capital if indeed India has made so much progress under him," Sharma said.