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Narendra Modi, Rahul Gandhi in war of words over Patel statue
Saturday February 8, 2014 8:08 PM, IANS

A war of words broke out between Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi and BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi over constructing a statue of India's first home minister Vallabhbhai Patel.

Gandhi said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) did not understand Patel's ideology but was erecting his statue, to which Modi hit back, saying the Congress has "forgotten Patel".

The Gandhi scion, speaking at a rally in Bardoli in Gujarat, said: "Those who do not understand the ideology of Sardar Patel want to make his statue."

He added: "A poisonous mentality killed Mahatma Gandhi."

Meanwhile, Modi at his rally in Guwahati, said the Congress has forgotten the ideology of Patel.

"Everyone says that you are from BJP and a part of RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) and you are constructing the statue of unity... For you, he must be just a party leader (of Congress), for us, he us a national leader," Modi said.

"Sardar Patel is a national figure. He doesn't belong to any party. The Congress has forgotten him. We have forced them to remember him after 60 years," he added.

Modi has announced the statue of Patel on the banks of the Narmada in Gujarat, would be the tallest in the world.

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