BJP's rival parties today waded into the raging row over Lok Sabha tickets for some of its veterans, calling it an "insult" and attempt to sideline them and also used the Muthalik episode to slam the saffron party.
Samajwadi Party termed "sidelining" of senior BJP leaders like L K Advani and Jaswant Singh as an "insult" and a "conspiracy" by BJP Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi and party president Rajnath Singh against the Brahmin community.
"The way in which senior leaders like Murli Manohar Joshi, Kalraj Mishra, Kesrinath Tripathi were sidelined in the party shows that there is a bigger conspiracy against the Brahmin community by BJP leaders (Narendra) Modi and (Rajnath) Singh," state Agriculture Minister and senior SP leader Manoj Kumar Pandey told reporters in Lucknow.
By denying ticket to Jaswant Singh and inducting Sri Ram Sene chief Pramod Muthalik in the party, BJP is showing doors to its senior leaders but offering red-carpet to "goons", Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said.
"So, gentlemen like JaswantSingh will be shown the door & goons like Muthalik will receive the red carpet," Omar wrote on Twitter.
After it was left redfaced, the BJP cancelled Muthalik's induction within hours after he was admitted into the party.
CPI-M leader Brinda Karat called the BJP actions in the recent days as an act of "desperation".
"Their desperation shows in their actions."
They are not only annoying and disappointing their own senior leaders but also giving tickets to those who have been chargesheeted in the Muzaffarnagar riots cases and attracting people like Amit Shah, who is accused in an encounter killing case, and the likes of Pramod Muthalik (whose outfit was accused of molesting women in Mangalore)," she said in New Delhi.
AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal poked fun at the fractious relationship between Modi and Advani, saying the BJP patriarch should change his name if he wanted Modi to listen to him.
"If Advani wants Modi to listen to him, he should drop "v" from his name," Kejriwal tweeted.
The AAP leader has been attacking Modi over his alleged links with the Adani business group.
Senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh accused the BJP of disrespecting its senior leaders.