Breaking an unwritten code, Narendra Modi today held a rally here in the Gandhi family pocket-borough, attacking "family" politics and said he has not come for "revenge" but for "change" in this backward region.
Campaigning for actress-turned-politician and BJP candidate Smriti Irani contesting against Rahul Gandhi, he rejected the Congress Vice President's charge that he practises "politics of anger".
"I have not come here for revenge. I have come here for bringing about a change in this constituency which has been neglected by the Gandhi family despite representing it for 40 years. You just invoke family relations with the people here but do nothing for its development," the BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate said.
Concluding his speech minutes before the campaign ended in the constituency which will witness polling on May 7, he said he has not come here to "trouble Rahul Gandhi. He is already a troubled soul."
Describing Smriti as his "younger sister" and his "representative", he said, "time has come to snap the relationship between the family and the constituency. People here have been cheated."
Attacking Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, he said, "you have committed sins. For 40 years, you have cheated three generations whose lives have been destroyed and their dreams shattered...I have come here to turn your dreams as mine, to convert your pain into mine."
The campaigning by Modi in Rahul's constituency was significant as no top leader usually undertakes electioneering in the constituency of top rivals.
Hitting back at "Rahul bhaiyya" over his "politics of anger" charge against him, Modi said such politics was the domain of "arrogant" Congress.
In this context, he said Rajiv Gandhi, then Congress General Secretary, had once publicly "abused" and "humiliated" the then Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister T Anjaiah at airport. Anjaiah was the CM between 1980 and 1982.
He then raked up the unceremonious removal of Sitaram Kesri as the Congress President in 1998 as "Madam Sonia Gandhi" was angry against him and wanted to take over the reins of the party.
Modi also mentioned the treatment meted out by Sonia Gandhi to former Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao, saying "when he passed away, he was treated like Bahadur Shah Zafar and denied even a small piece of land for his cremation in Delhi."
While listing the examples of "anger" of Congress leaders, he referred to an incident last year when Rahul publicly termed as "nonsense" a decision of the Union Cabinet on an Ordinance and said it should be "torn".
The BJP leader said that by this act, Rahul had publicly "humiliated" Prime Minister Manmohan Singh besides the Union Cabinet.
"This is called anger," Modi said addressing Rahul.
He said he had been at the receiving end of Congress' anger. Taking a dig, he said "four days are still left, take out your anger on me as much you can."
He also took a swipe at Sonia Gandhi, saying he "understands the worry of the mother. For last 10 years, she has been trying to see that her son settles down. But when it looks like her effort is being wasted, she is feeling worried."
On Sonia Gandhi's barb that Modi has already started thinking he is a Prime Minister, the BJP leader had another swipe. "Madam Soniaji, aap ke muh mein ghee shakkar (may your words come true)."
Targeting Sonia and Rahul, he said they were feeling unsettled, wondering how a 'tea-vendor' could challenge a "ruler".
Alleging lack of development in Amethi, Modi said the people of this constituency had given their "love" to the Gandhi family for 40 years but they have been "cheated".
He specifically highlighted the lack of toilets in girl schools in Amethi to buttress his point.
"When I decided to send my younger sister Smriti Irani to Uttar Pradesh I had not thought of sending her to Amethi, but to a backward constituency. Amethi happens to be the most backward. Now, I have decided to change Amethi completely in 60 months. People from other universities will come for case studies," he said, adding that in 2019, he will revisit the constituency to enlist the developments that would take place.
Modi alleged that Sonia and Rahul have "cheated" the poor in the country and never thought a "son of a poor mother" and "tea-vendor" would challenge them.
"Is it a crime to be born in a poor family. Is it a crime to sell tea. They made me a criminal. But I can assure you that good days will come," he said.
Trying to strike an emotional chord Modi said his "pride" lies in the hands of the people of Amethi.
"My honour is in your hand...Pride of a servant, a son of a poor mother...A tea vendors pride," he said.
Modi said Amethi could have been developed as the best district of the country during the Gandhis' 40-year rule, but they kept on blaming the state government for the poor state of affairs.
"Even though BSP and SP are our arch-rivals, I am sure that if I become Prime Minister and request Mulayam Singh Yadav to help me in a development project for my sister's constituency (Amethi), they will extend every help," he said.
He also challenged the Centre to "make public all the communications that Rahul Gandhi wrote to the state government seeking implementation of development projects for his constituency".
Modi alleged that, as the campaigning for the May 7 polling in Amethi came to end today, Congress will try to buy votes in Amethi. "Their cars have left. The cars have a lot of 'maal' (cash) in them. But I am sure the people will not be swayed by them," he said.
In his nearly 50-minute speech, Modi slammed Congress president Sonia Gandhi for attacking him over his 'ye dil maange more' remarks.
"I had said 'ye dil maange more' and I will again say 'yeh dil maange more'. I am here to ask from the public which is god in democracy. What is the harm in asking from god. The one who asks is better than those who rob," he said.
"Earlier, maa-beta (Sonia-Rahul) never took my name. But now that the whole country cries, 'Modi-Modi', it's affecting them as well... At least I gave Gandhis an outlet to vent their anger," he said.
Praising Smriti Irani, Modi said the BJP candidate was an achiever. "I ask all media people to make my younger sister stand against all the Gandhis, and ask her the names of villages in Amethi. She will be able to tell you the names of 100 villages, the Gandhis put together can only recite the names of 10 villages," he said.
He said the election results will prove all political pundits wrong as the people have decided to show the door to the 'maa-beta' government and lay the foundation for a strong and stable government.
Earlier addressing the gathering, Irani said Amethi wants to be part of the wave of change that is taking place in the nation. She said Rahul is talking about women empowerment across the country but there is no degree college for girls in Amethi.