Opposition parties are trying to form a 'Mahagathbandhan' or grand alliance against the BJP
Senior Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan alleged on Sunday that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was adopting various strategies to prevent opposition parties from forming a 'Mahagathbandhan' (grand alliance) even as the Telangana BJP rejected it.
Noting that next general elections were crucial for the Congress, Mr Chavan told reporters in Hyderabad that a lot of people are coming together on a common platform to protect the Constitution and democracy.
Alleging that Prime Minister Modi was adopting various strategies to ensure that a 'Mahagathbandhan' (grand alliance) does not materialise, Mr Chavan said, "(Prime Minister) Modi's strategy for winning elections will be religious polarisation, massive use of money, and using tactics to make sure that our alliance doesn't materialise."
Asked about BJP leader Ram Madhav's reported statement on the option of an ordinance for early construction of the Ram temple at Ayodhya, Mr Chavan said "they (BJP) have suddenly started thinking of Ram Mandir after four-and-half-years."
"They think they can win by this… their (electoral) promises.. nothing happened and now (they say) build a temple."
"What was this government doing? Why did it not build a consensus among different communities so that an acceptable solution could have been arrived at?" he questioned.
Asking people to be cautious over alleged attempts at 'religious polarisation' and the Ayodhya issue ahead of Lok Sabha polls, the Congress leader expressed fears that there could be some attacks on places of worship.
To another query, Mr Chavan claimed that "Unfortunately' under PM Modi's rule all institutions of democracy have been subverted."
Mr Chavan alleged that Prime Minister Modi was using all investigating agencies against opposition parties, to browbeat them.
Reacting to Mr Chavan's charges, Telangana BJP spokesperson Krishna Saagar Rao told news agency PTI that a 'Mahagathbandhan' (grand alliance) was a "failed alliance" and "it is a losers' league".
"It is a survival game inspired by Congress party's dynastic system. Modiji does not need to scuttle the formation (of grand alliance). People of India have no interest in this alliance and they will reject it," Mr Rao added.
On the Ram temple issue, Mr Rao said those who are saying that BJP is indulging in polarisation politics are ignorant.
On the charge that PM Modi was allegedly adopting strategies to prevent formation of grand alliance and win elections, Mr Rao said, "BJP doesn't need money or muscle power or polarisation to win polls. We have proved this time and again in many states. People are electing us because of good governance and relentless focus on the lowest rung of people, farmers and the downtrodden."