Slamming the prime minister for his “bhrashtachari number 1” taunt at Rajiv Gandhi, senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said on Monday that Narendra Modi did not get “sanskar” (cultural grooming) as he had escaped from home at a young age. Kharge said Modi’s remark reflected his frustration. Also Read - Amid Farmers Protest, PM Modi Says New Agricultural Reforms Have Given Them Legal Protection

At a rally in Uttar Pradesh on Saturday, Modi attacked Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, saying, “Your father was termed Mr Clean by his courtiers but his life ended as bhrashtachari number 1” (Corrupt number 1). Also Read - Nationwide Lockdown on Cards? PM Modi to Hold All-party Meet on December 4 to Discuss COVID Situation

Speaking to reporters in Kalaburagi, Kharge said Modi lacked political and practical knowledge. Also Read - Regretting Error: Congress MP Anand Sharma Clarifies After Praising PM Modi's Visit to Vaccine Facilities

“He did not get sanskar at home as he had fled home at a young age. Where will he get it? People should have control over their tongue when speaking,” the Congress leader said.

Modi’s comment on Rajiv Gandhi has drawn widespread criticism from various opposition parties, which said he lowered the dignity of the office of the prime minister.

The BJP has countered the charge saying every word Modi said about the former PM was true. It received support from ally Shiromani Akali Dal.

Kharge alleged that Modi always tried to rake up emotional issues and spoke lies.

Alleging that falsehood was a quality Modi has since birth, Kharge said he had insulted a martyr who sacrificed his life for the unity of the nation.

“When Modi speaks so low about a person who gave his life for the nation, it means that he has no heart, no patriotism and his only objective is to win the election. It is unfortunate that the prime minister lacks the wisdom of what to talk and what not to talk. Except for talking, his contribution to the nation is nil,” he charged.

The Congress leader predicted victory in Amethi, Rae Bareli and elsewhere in Uttar Pradesh. Rahul Gandhi is contesting from Amethi and his mother Sonia Gandhi from Rae Bareli.