NCP general secretary and former Gujarat chief minister Shankersinh Vaghela on Thursday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “derogatory and false” statements against Rajiv Gandhi showed that the BJP’s campaign has reached a dead end and the PM was in a “panic mode”.

Vaghela also expressed confidence that the UPA will form the next government at the Centre.

“The remarks made by Modi against former PM Rajiv Gandhi, who is no longer alive, are derogatory and false. The remarks are unbecoming of a PM…By attacking Rajiv Gandhi, Modi has proved that the BJP campaign has reached a dead end,” he said on the sidelines of an event.

The statement has lowered the dignity of the office of the prime minister, he said.

“As five phases of polling are over, the BJP camp is nervous. PM Modi, who for the past five years was in flight mode, is in an electoral panic mode today,” Vaghela said.

At a rally in Uttar Pradesh last Saturday, Modi had targeted Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, saying, “Your father (Rajiv Gandhi) was termed Mr Clean by his courtiers, but his life ended as ‘bhrashtachari’ no 1 (corrupt number 1).”

Besides, in a sensational charge, Modi on Wednesday accused the Gandhi family of using warship INS Viraat as its “personal taxi” when Rajiv Gandhi was the prime minister.

Vaghela alleged, “In the last five years, the PM could not improve the standard of living of the people. However, he has single-handedly lowered the standard of politics in the country.”

According to the NCP leader, the question of BJP returning to power does not arise as UPA-III government will be formed at the Centre after the Lok Sabha poll results.