Rae Bareli: Priyanka Gandhi today took on Narendra Modi by raking up the "snoopgate" controversy surrounding him and said leaders who indulge in wrong acts against women should be "thrown out".
Campaigning for her mother and Congress President Sonia Gandhi in this constituency of Uttar Pradesh, she also exhorted the electorate to reject divisive politics and those persons who believe in concentrating all powers with themselves.
Contending that the standards of election campaigning had deteriorated, she deplored personal attacks and said "this is not politics".
She told a gathering of women to make political leaders answerable and ask, "If you are talking about empowering us (women), tell us how will you do that. If you are talking about empowering us (women), then do not listen to our phone conversations behind closed doors."
Even though she did not name Modi, the reference was clearly to the Gujarat Chief Minister who has been surrounded by a controversy over snooping of a young woman in the state allegedly at his behest.
In a suggestive remark, Priyanka told the gathering, "You must be knowing (about the controversy). Isn't it?"
She then went on to add, "If there are such political leaders who indulge in wrong acts against women, they should be thrown out of parties."
The Congress' star campaigner, who has been camping here, said the leaders should be asked what they are doing for empowering women.
"When there is talk about women's empowerment, you must have seen, a lot of leaders come and speak on the issue. It is always about the role of a woman as mother, sister, daughter or wife. This is fine. I too am a mother, sister, daughter and wife. But that is not our 'astitva' (existence). We are 'nari' (women) and that is our existence," she said.
Asserting that empowerment is a right of women, Priyanka said nobody should think that it is some kind of favour towards the fair sex which comprises half the population.