NEW DELHI: Congress today released its first advertisement for the Lok Sabha polls, but main Opposition BJP targeted it saying the party has “copied” Narendra Modi’s ad blitz at a BJP convention in 2011.
Dismissing BJP’s charges of plagiarism, Congress spokesperson Shobha Oza insisted that no one has sole proprietary right on words and ideas.
According to BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain, this is a phrase coined by Modi at the party’s ‘Chintan Shivir’ in 2011 where he said ‘Mein Nahi, Hum’ to connect with the common man.
“Though Congress hates Modi, they like the phrase coined by him and use as their own slogan,” he said.
He sought to find loopholes in the ad saying, “Although they have copied from Modi, they have not done so properly as the pictures of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and party chief Sonia Gandhi are missing.”
“It only shows the picture of Rahul. One can only imagine where the ‘hum’ are, it is only ‘mein’ (me) in the ad,” Hussain said.
Oza said there is “no need for Congress to copy anyone”.
“Just because someone says it is their baby,… (It is not the case,” she said, adding that the Congress has always emphasized on “we” and has played inclusive politics.
“This is unlike the prime ministerial candidate of the BJP who often propagates the theory of ‘I and me’ and often forgets that he is part of the BJP,” she said.
The Congress’ main slogan is “har haath shakti, har haath tarakki”, she said, adding based on the theme of self-help, the slogan meant “power in every hand; progress for everyone”.
Apparently hinting at AAP, she suggested that the Congress was the first to talk of the aam aadmi plank 10 years ago.
Incidentally, the Congress punch line in the ad campaign of 2009 was: Congress Ka Haath, Aam Aadmi ke Saath (the Congress’ hand is always with the common man).
The campaign in 2004 Lok Sabha polls revolved around ‘Aam Aadmi Ko Kya Mila’ (What did the common man get), a response to the BJP’s ‘India Shining’ campaign. Meanwhile, Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari said, “The discourse over the past six months evidences that the BJP’s Prime Ministerial aspirant has an ostensible proprietary right over the words “I me myself” while the partnership with the people that transformed the country over the past ten years provides a legitimate claim to Cong and UPA over the word ‘we’.” –PTI