In one of his most direct attacks on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Monday said Mr Modi had come to power with the help of a ‘fabricated strongman image’ but now that image of a leader with a 56-inch chest was under attack from China.
In a new video on the ongoing border crisis, the Congress leader claimed that China may be thinking on a larger scale of “doing something with Pakistan in Kashmir” and wanted to improve its tactical position in areas such as Demchok, Galwan and Pangong lake.
“PM fabricated a fake strongman image to come to power. It was his biggest strength. It is now India’s biggest weakness,” Mr Gandhi tweeted with a new video playing for two minutes and 39 seconds.
Commenting on the recent India-China border face-off in the Ladakh region, the Congress leader claimed it was not just a border issue but designed to put pressure on Mr Modi.
“And what they are doing, is that they are attacking his image. They understand that it in order for Mr Narendra Modi to be an effective politician; in order for Mr Narendra Modi to survive as a politician, he has to protect the idea of ‘chhappan inch’ [56-inch chest]. And this is the real idea the Chinese are attacking,” the Congress leader said.
“They are basically telling Mr Narendra Modi that if you do not do what we say, we will destroy the idea of Mr Narendra Modi as a strong leader. Now the question is, how will Mr Narendra Modi react. Will he take them on? Will he take on the challenge and say absolutely not, I’m the Prime Minister of India. I do not care about my image I’m going to take you on. Or will he succumb to them? The worry I have so far is that the Prime Minister has succumbed,” he added.