New Delhi: Youth should not be charmed by the "chocolate face" of Rahul Gandhi and should realise that in Congress only those born with a political legacy have a future while in Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) anybody could rise to the top, senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj said on Monday.
Taking a dig at the Congress General Secretary in-charge of Youth Congress and National Students Union of India, and other young Congress leaders, Swaraj said, "Congress first plasters a city with posters and hoardings of its leaders. Then it takes these chocolate faces to the city. Obviously, glamour has its own attraction among the youth and they join the party."
Swaraj was addressing young BJP MPs and members of party's youth wing, Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha.
"In BJP, even one born in the slums can hope to reach the top," she said, while exhorting the youth wing to highlight this aspect among the young to bring them into the party fold.
Swaraj, who became a minister in the Haryana government at 25 years of age, said BJP had always encouraged young leaders.
"But we did not sing about it. We treated it as natural. Congress flaunts these chocolate faces while our young leaders are not even noticed by the media," she said.
The Deputy Leader of Opposition said she would encourage the young BJP MPs to actively take part in Parliament and not waste the opportunity given to them by the people.
Swaraj told the young BJP MPs to pose questions and speak out in Parliament. "Without losing time you should raise your voice in the House. Else five years will be wasted and nobody will give you any importance," she said.
During its ongoing national executive meeting, BJYM felicitated 24 of the 31 young MPs of BJP. They include Varun Gandhi, Arjun Munda, Saroj Pandey and Nishikant Dubey, among others.
Swaraj said several BJYM presidents had later become MPs and ministers. She gave the example of Shivraj Singh Chouhan (Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister) and party President Rajnath Singh.
"Congress is making a lot of noise about its youth leaders...it seems that one has descended from somewhere and everybody is lining up behind him....We have five time MPs who were elected when they were 25 years old," she said.
Recalling the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led NDA Cabinet which had 12 young ministers, Swaraj said, "It was then said that we (the young ministers) were running the government."
All the present United Progressive Alliance Cabinet ministers were above 50, she added.
Taking Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee's promise of a White Paper on her predecessor Lalu Prasad's tenure as an example, Swaraj also said the present UPA government had started making mistakes by questioning its own ministers in the previous government as it was full of arrogance.