Lucknow: Launching a counter offensive against Rahul Gandhi, UP Chief Minister Mayawati on Sunday alleged that he was indulging in "theatrics" as her party's symbol "elephant" was giving nightmares to the Congressmen.
   
"Congress is the weakest party in UP. Therefore, wary of its position, its leaders specially the 'Yuvraj' instead of attending Parliament, are indulging into theatrics in the state," the BSP supremo alleged while kickstarting her party's election campaign at a 'Dalit-OBC Bhaichara Sammelan' here.
   
She claimed that the Congress was "afraid of the increasing base" of the BSP. "I think BSP's poll symbol elephant is surely chasing Congressmen in their dreams and upset with that, they are talking absurd things about it."
   
Gandhi, who has been attacking Mayawati government on the issue of corruption in the run up to the assembly polls due next year, had while addressing a public meeting in Siddharthnagar on Friday said that an 'elephant' in Lucknow was eating away all the money sent by the Centre for the poor in Uttar Pradesh.
   
Terming Gandhi's "beggar" remarks as as insult to the people of the state, the BSP supremo said they have migrated to other states in search of livelihood as successive Congress governments failed to ensure development of UP.
   
Taking a dig at his promise of making UP "number one" state in five years, Mayawati said it was mere a "political gimmick". She said, "How will he make UP number one in five years when his party failed to do so in 40 years of its rule."
   
Dismissing allegations of discrepancies in implementation of MNREGS, Mayawati said Congress was raising the issue only for "cheap publicity and political gains" while claiming that strict action had been initiated against those indulging in irregularities.
   
The Chief Minister also said she would snap ties with her family members if any of them dreamt of becoming an MP or MLA. "My mother, father, brother, sister and other relatives are my relatives till the time they are part of BSP family. The day any of them dreams of becoming an MP or MLA, I will end my relationship," Mayawati said.
   
Opposing FDI in retail, the BSP supremo alleged that the step had been taken to "please" Gandhi and warned that it would make Uttar Pradesh a bankrupt state.
   
"As Congress supremo Sonia Gandhi is ill...the party has made internal decision to make Rahul acting party Chief and Prime Minister in future. To please the 'yuvraj', FDI in retail has been allowed to benefit his foreign friends," she said.
   
"If this is allowed, UP will become 'Kangal (bankrupt) Pradesh' in the next five years as local traders will be forced to shut shop," Mayawati said.

(Agencies)