Varun: Won’t cross ‘lakshman rekha’ against family
Uttar Pradesh: Varun Gandhi hit back at cousin Priyanka Gandhi on Tuesday, suggesting she had crossed the "lakshman rekha of decency" with remarks that he had gone "astray". The Bahratiya Janata party (BJP) candidate said that his "decency and large-heartedness" should not be construed as a weakness by anyone.
In a statement, the 34-year-old BJP leader said, "In the past decade, whether it has been a member of my family or a senior leader of any political party, I have never crossed the lakshman rekha of decency in my speeches."
"There has been talk of my path. I have always considered the nation's path as more important than my own. In my lifetime, if I am able to constructively contribute towards nation-building, I would consider my life meaningful," he said.
Priyanka, 42, attacked Varun in her speech in Amethi last week, suggesting he needed to learn the ‘right path’ by being defeated in the elections.
"He is definitely from my family, he is my brother. But he has gone astray. When a young one in the family chooses the wrong path, then the elders show them the right path, the right way. I urge all of you to show my brother the right path," she said.
Her remarks invited an immediate response from Varun's mother Maneka Gandhi who said, "If he has gone astray while serving the country, the country will decide."
Varun, who filed his nomination, from Sultanpur as a BJP candidate, said, "We should debate unemployment, corruption, poverty and illiteracy instead of making personal attacks."
"Let us try to raise the level of discourse rather than lowering it. When we practice politics centered on personal criticism, we deviate from the crucial issues of our time. If India has to move towards politics of hope, we will have to raise the level of debate," he concluded.
Priyanka makes second attack on Varun, says LS polls are not a 'tea party'
Even as Varun hit back at her for her remarks that he has gone "astray" and should be shown the right path, Priyanka said she would not have forgiven her child if he did something like this. She was apparently referring to Varun contesting on a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ticket.
"This is not a family tea party. It is an ideological war. Would not have forgiven my child, if he did something like this," she told reporters on the day Varun filed papers as a BJP candidate from Sultanpur; the constituency is adjacent to the Amethi Parliamentary seat represented by Rahul Gandhi.
Priyanka said she was "not upset" over the leak of the video in which she had spoken about Varun and maintained that those were her views. She also said she did not speak to Varun after her remarks were leaked.
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Education qualification: Should Smriti Irani come clean?
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- Yes. She must clarify the discrepancies in her affidavits
- No. She must instead focus on her ministry to prove critics wrong
- Educational qualifications do not matter to become a minister. His/her work counts