The Congress Friday reiterated its claim that BJP leader Narendra Modi did not belong to any backward class and his efforts to project himself as a "deprived person" reflected his desperation.Accusing Modi of distorting Priyanka Gandhi Vadra's "low-level" politics remark, Congress spokesperson Ajay Maken said: "Modi by birth did not belong to the OBC group. It was only in 2002 that Modh Ghanchi-Teli caste, to which he belongs, was declared Other Backward Classes."Maken further alleged that the induction of Modi's caste into the OBC list was a calculated measure to garner OBC votes."The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance government issued a notification in late 2000 that Modh Ghanchi-Teli caste be included in the OBC list. This was barely six months before Modi was made the Gujarat chief minister. We are of the opinion that this was a tactical move by the BJP to win over the OBCs," Maken said.
The BJP described the Congress accusations as the party's inability to "accept defeat at the hands of a commoner"."The ruling dynasty of the Congress cannot digest defeat at the hands of a commoner. It is therefore that they made his humble origin as a tea vendor into an issue. The move backfired," BJP leader Arun Jaitley wrote in his blog Friday.Gujarat state Congress leader Shakti Singh Gohil had taunted Modi May 8 for being a "fake OBC".Priyanka's May 5 "neech rajniti" (low-level politics) barb at Modi was given a caste spin with the latter using it to play upon his "lower caste" identity Tuesday. The Congress accused Modi of deliberately misinterpreting facts while BSP supremo Mayawati attacked him for his "despicable politics" for electoral benefit.