Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday hit back at Rahul Gandhi for his 'chowkidar chor hai' barb at him, saying the Congress president has insulted people working as guards and asserted that the word 'chowkidar' has now become synonymous with patriotism and honesty.
In an interaction with watchmen from across the country, Modi said his rivals lacked guts to name him and attack him directly, and instead resorted to targeting watchmen.
With the prime minister often projecting himself as the country's 'chowkidar', Gandhi had coined the "chowkidar chor hai" (watchman is thief) slogan to allege corruption in the Rafale deal, a charge denied by the government.
Known for his innovative political campaigns, Modi recently launched a "Main bhi chowkidar" (I too am watchman) drive on social media to turn the tables on the Congress.
Without naming Gandhi, he said "naamdaar" (dynasts) have a habit to spread hate against those who believe in work and they will continue to insult them even if somebody becomes a prime minister.
The BJP said Modi interacted with over 25 lakh watchmen.