Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya, who is also the BJP co-incharge for the upcoming Karnataka Assembly polls, exuded confidence on Wednesday that the saffron party will retain power in the southern state with a thumping majority and form a "double-engine government again".
Speaking at the News 18's "Rising India Summit", Mandaviya in a satiric tone, said Congress leader Rahul Gandhi himself would facilitate the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) electoral triumph in Karnataka.
The Union minister said during his multiple visits to Karnataka of late, he has observed that the people of the state have immense faith and respect for Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the speed with which the BJP workers are working on the ground, they will be able to convert that into votes.
"And the BJP will form a double-engine government again," he said. BJP leaders often use the term "double engine" to refer to the saffron party being in power both at the Centre and in a state.
The Election Commission (EC) announced on Wednesday that the Karnataka Assembly polls will be held in a single phase on May 10 and the counting of votes will be taken up on May 13.
On whether the recent allegations of corruption against a BJP MLA from the southern state will affect the party's poll prospects, Mandaviya said, "We are and will always be against corruption. Supporting corruption and protecting the corrupt is not Narendra Modi's ideology."
On the Opposition's allegation that the Centre is misusing probe agencies, such as the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), he said if someone is innocent, he should not be afraid of any enquiry and should face it bravely.
On the Congress holding the BJP responsible for Gandhi's disqualification from the Lok Sabha following his conviction in a 2019 defamation case, Mandaviya said one should have faith in the judiciary.
"He (Gandhi) said something and a person moved the court against it and then the judiciary gave its judgment.... How is the government to be blamed for any of it?" the BJP leader asked.