With the Delhi Assembly elections just a few weeks away, political parties have entered campaign. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which is looking to come to power in the national capital, is in a direct contest with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). The party has repeatedly attacked AAP and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal over various issues. But on Tuesday, the BJP Delhi’s tweet against the incumbent chief minister had people riled up.
The tweet was one of a series, with two photos — one was a reference to that infamous burnt bus from the day Jamia Millia Islamia University students were attacked by the Delhi police, and the other was that of Kejriwal in a skull cap. The tweet called the bus the “art” and Kejriwal the “artist”.
The BJP, which has been on the backfoot over protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act and violence in central universities, has maintained that protesters burnt a Delhi Transport Corporation bus on 15 December 2019. While according to several fact-checks, it is unclear whether the bus was burnt at all and if so, who burnt it, right-wing supporters have reportedly brought this up to justify the brutal police crackdown on students of Jamia Millia Islamia University.
Several Twitter users pointed out that the tweet was communal and Islamophobic, with the photo of Kejriwal in a skull cap deliberately chosen to vilify Muslims. They also alleged that the BJP, which led a divisive campaign even during the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections, was trying to deviate attention from real issues like the economic slowdown.
Here’s what people on Twitter said:
Both Modi and finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman were reminded of the sorry state of the Indian economy as well—retail inflation was at a five-and-a-half-year high in December and economic growth slowed to a six-and-a-half-year low of 4.5% in the September quarter.