Senior BJP leader and Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitley said Mr. Gandhi was “ill informed” on the matter.
While the Gujarat government responded adequately and controlled the 2002 riots, no such action was taken during the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, Mr. Jaitley claimed.
Mr. Gandhi on Monday said that the Narendra Modi government was responsible for “abetting and pushing” the 2002 Gujarat riots while the Congress government tried to stop the 1984 riots.
Another BJP leader Subramanian Swamy charged that more Sikhs were killed in 1984.
BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad asked Mr. Gandhi to explain the concentration of power, which makes him the vice president and the chorus that he be declared the Prime Ministerial candidate.
“But, in contrast, Modi was born in poverty and he has come up to the level of becoming the Prime Ministerial candidate due to his hardwork, integrity and record in Governance,” he said.
Making a direct attack on Mr. Modi, Mr. Gandhi had said on Monday that, “the fact of the matter is that innocent people died in 1984 and innocent people dying is a horrible thing and should not happen. The difference between Gujarat and 1984 was that the government of Gujarat was involved in the riots.”
Seeking to differentiate the role of governments during the anti-Sikh riots in Delhi and 2002 in Gujarat, he had said, “The simple difference is that in 1984, the government was not involved in the massacre of people. In Gujarat it was.”