- Anand Sharma yesterday questioned Bengal Congress over ISF tie-up
- Congress cannot be "selective" about fighting communalism, he said
- Adhir Chowdhury today posted a series of tweets to respond
Stung by party colleague Anand Sharma's open condemnation, Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury today posted a series of tweets in a scorching thread titled "Know Your Facts, Anand Sharma".
Anand Sharma had yesterday questioned the Bengal Congress for its decision to tie up with the ISF (Indian Secular Front) for polls in the state starting later this month. The Congress cannot be "selective" about fighting communalism, the former Union Minister tweeted.
Adhir Chowdhury today said he would urge "a select group of distinguished Congressmen to rise above always seeking personal comfort spots" and stop singing praises of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He appeared to refer to Mr Sharma as well as Ghulam Nabi Azad, who said he felt "proud" of leaders like PM Modi. Both are part of the Congress dissidents' group known as the "G-23", which has routinely criticized party decisions since it wrote a controversial letter calling for "full-time and visible leadership" in the party, apparently targeting the Gandhis.
"Would urge a select group of distinguished Congressmen to rise above always seeking personal comfort spots & stop wasting time singing praises of PM. They owe a duty to strengthen the Party and not undermine the tree that nurtured them," Mr Chowdhury, the chief of the Congress in Bengal, posted.
He also said the Congress was a part of the CPI(M)-led Left Front in Bengal, which was "determined to defeat BJP". Calling the decision of the front "communal" would only play into the hands of the BJP, he commented.
2/4— Adhir Chowdhury (@adhirrcinc) March 1, 2021
Know ur facts @AnandSharmaINC : -
2. @INCIndia has got its full share of seats. Left Front is allocating seats from its share to the newly formed Indian Secular Front-ISF. Ur choice to call the decision of CPM led front ‘communal' is only serving the polarising agenda of BJP
4/4— Adhir Chowdhury (@adhirrcinc) March 1, 2021
Know ur facts @AnandSharmaINC -
4. Would urge a select group of distinguished Congressmen to rise above always seeking personal comfort spots & stop wasting time singing praises of PM.
They owe a duty to strengthen the Party & not undermine the tree that nurtured them.
Mr Chowdhury also said those committed to fight against the BJP's "venomous communalism" should support the Congress ad campaign for it in five states instead of undermining it.
The thread was widely circulated and drew many comments. The BJP expressed mock-pity for the Congress leader
"Such is the burden of loyalty that he despite being PCC President, floor leader in LS and a former Union Minister gets insulted on stage, yet he is made to live with this insult and defend communal elements. What a pitiable position to be in," the BJP tweeted, sharing the thread.
Such is the burden of loyalty that he despite being PCC President, floor leader in LS and a former Union Minister gets insulted on stage, yet he is made to live with this insult and defend communal elements.— BJP (@BJP4India) March 2, 2021
What a pitiable position to be in. https://t.co/yb4TKPvq0t
Anand Sharma, while targeting Mr Chowdhury, was referring to visuals of him sharing a stage at an election rally with the Left and the ISF. "Congress's alliance with the ISF and similar parties goes against its core ideology, and the secularism advocated by Gandhi and Nehru, which is the soul of the Congress. These issues should have been discussed by the Congress Working Committee (CWC)," Mr Sharma tweeted in Hindi. "In the fight against communalism, the Congress cannot be selective. We must fight against communalism in all forms. The West Bengal Congress chief's presence and support is shameful, he has to explain his stand," he added. Bengal Congress leaders, including Adhir Chowdhury, have reportedly expressed misgivings about the tie-up with the ISF led by Muslim cleric Abbas Siddiqui, who is known for controversial comments in his religious speeches. The Left denies that the outfit is communal. Bengal will vote with three more states and one Union Territory from March 27 and the results will be out on May 2.