- PM had dared Congress to contest elections on Rajiv Gandhi's image
- "Contest elections on GST, notes ban," Priyanka Gandhi retorted
- Verbal sparring on since PM Modi's "Corrupt No.1" remark on Rajiv Gandhi
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Wednesday responded to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's challenge with one of her own. PM Modi had dared the Congress to contest the final rounds of the national election on Rajiv Gandhi's image. While campaigning in Delhi, Priyanka Gandhi retorted: "A Delhi girl is openly challenging you. Contest the last two phases on notebandi, GST, women's safety and unfulfilled promises to the youth."
The verbal sparring started when PM Modi, over the weekend, said at a rally that Rajiv Gandhi's life had ended as "Corrupt No.1". The comments on Priyanka and Rahul Gandhi's father, a former prime minister assassinated in 1991 by a suicide bomber - were condemned by many opposition parties.
Priyanka Gandhi on Wednesday also tackled criticism of her great-grandfather Jawaharlal Nehru, India's first prime minister, by top BJP leaders including PM Modi. "Their situation is like those children who don't do their homework and come to school. When the teacher asks them they say, 'Kya karoon, Nehru ji ne mera parcha le liya, chhupa diya (what can I do, Nehru took my work and hid it. What can I do, Indira (Gandhi) made paper planes out of my homework," said the Congress general secretary.
Priyanka Gandhi sat on top of a slow-moving minibus along with former chief minister Sheila Dikshit as she campaigned for the first time in Delhi since she joined politics in January. She held roadshows to campaign for two candidates including Sheila Dikshit, who is contesting from Northeast Delhi, and boxer Vijender Singh, the Congress candidate from south Delhi.
Earlier on Wednesday, Priyanka Gandhi was attacked by Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal, who accused her of "wasting her time" in Delhi and avoiding constituencies where the Congress is in a direct fight with the ruling BJP.
"She (Priyanka Gandhi) is wasting her time, why doesn't she campaign in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh? She's doing rallies in UP against the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party, she's doing rallies in Delhi against AAP. Both brother and sister aren't going to those places where there's a direct fight with the BJP," Mr Kejriwal said.
All seven seats of Delhi will go to polls in a single phase on Sunday as part of national elections; results will be counted on May 23.
Talks between AAP and the Congress for an alliance crashed over Mr Kejriwal's insistence on extending the seat pact beyond Delhi to Haryana and Punjab.