The Congress on Friday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of insulting the city of Bengaluru and the people of Karnataka through his remarks during campaigning and sought an apology from him.
Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said that the Prime Minister had heaped a "special insult" on Bengaluru and its citizens by calling it a "city of sins" and "city of garbage".
"He (Modi) has insulted the people of Karnataka, insulted its entrepreneurs, IT technologists by labelling the city, which is known as India's Silicon Valley, as 'valley of sin'.
"A city and a state which symbolises development, aspirations, youth, opportunities, has been reduced to city of sins. This is a special insult that the Prime Minister has heaped upon Bengaluru and people of Karnataka," he said.
Modi, while addressing a rally in Bengaluru on Thursday, had accused the state's Congress government of having reduced Bengaluru to a valley of sins from Silicon Valley, and added that the city had been changed from a garden city to garbage city, from computer city to crime city, and from a start-up hub to a pothole club.
Taking strong exception to Modi's remarks, Singhvi said that the remarks and the language used were "totally unbefitting of a Prime Minister".
"While terming it as ‘city of sin', the Prime Minister totally ignored that 'S' stands for superior, 'I' stands for information technology and 'N' stands for novelty. This is what Bengaluru is. It's the real start-up hub.
"But Modi only finds sin in that, and that is deplorable. You don't create jobs, can't stop farmers' suicide, you have the lowest agriculture growth rate in a very, very long time and you accuse the Kannadigas of being a valley of sin. It is shameful and country needs an apology which we are never likely to get," he said.
Singhvi said that the fear, frustration and follies of the BJP were growing in the face of an imminent defeat in the upcoming state assembly elections.
He also said that rural wages have suffered under Modi government and MGNREGA has been given step-motherly treatment.
"This is not me or the Congress party saying this. A recent well detailed academic study by a senior researcher of the RBI has been published a few days ago and it finds that rural wages have suffered a significant deceleration," said Singhvi.
He also slammed the government over rising prices of petroleum products and demanded that these should be brought under Goods and Services Tax (GST).