New Delhi: Rejecting criticism that it was making a "personal attack" on Sonia Gandhi by asking about her travel and treatment expenses abroad, BJP on Thursday stressed that it was a political issue and wondered why the government or Congress had not come out with a clarification till now.

"The attack is not personal. It was only about Sonia Gandhi's travel expenses. It is a political issue and not personal. Details were sought about Sonia Gandhi's travel expenses from 2004 to 2012. It would be best for the Congress to give a proper clarification," BJP spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy said.

The party emphasised that the attacks should not be attributed to Gandhi's health and it was not making any "personal aspersions" on her health.

BJP insisted that the government and the Congress should deny the charges if they are untrue and should set the record straight.

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi had alleged that Rs 1,880 crore were spent from the government exchequer on the travel and treatment abroad of Sonia Gandhi. He had cited an RTI reply to back his charge.
However, the RTI activist had later stated that he had not yet received a reply.

Speaking at rally in Rajkot, Sonia on Wednesday avoided any reference to his allegations on the expenditure on her foreign travels, saying she was not bothered about personal attacks on her.

"Whenever we have taken steps in the interest of the nation, there have been all kinds of attacks against us. Neither have we bothered earlier, nor will we worry about them in future," Gandhi said.

Though Chief Information Commissioner has also said Gandhi has not submitted any medical bills to the government, it did not satisfy the opposition.

"The CIC is not a spokesperson of the Congress. Constitutional bodies are not spokespersons of the Congress," Rudy said.

When it was pointed out that CIC has asked the PMO to make public the expenses incurred on Gandhi's foreign visits, Rudy sought to know why the PMO has not come out with these details so far though though the plea was filed in 2010.


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