HindustanTimes Thu,18 Dec 2014

'Modi popular, but BJP will select PM candidate'

Ranjan Srivastava, Hindustan Times  Bhopal, February 03, 2013
First Published: 20:16 IST(3/2/2013) | Last Updated: 10:25 IST(4/2/2013)

The BJP national president Rajnath Singh termed Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi as the most popular leader.


However, on the issue of the party's Prime Ministerial candidate for 2014 Lok Sabha polls he said this would be decided by the party's central parliamentary board. He was addressing a press conference at the state BJP office.

Notably, the party's senior leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi reportedly too termed Modi as the most popular leader during his visit to Kumbh fair in Allahabad on Saturday.

On a volley of questions on confusion within the BJP over Modi to project him as the party's Prime Ministerial candidate Rajnath Singh said, "I have already said he is the most popular leader. An appropriate decision would be taken at an appropriate time. When I was the national president (previous term) and the election was coming nearer I had talks with all the alliance partners and called the meeting of central parliamentary board. Then, I projected the name of Advaniji for the post. When there is such a tradition should I break it?" asked an irritated Singh.  

When asked if Modi's name would be projected as the PM candidate during a Sadhus and saints meet at Kumbh in Allahabad this month as speculations are going on he parried the question and said whenever there was Kumbh he visited it.

On some Janata Dal (U) leaders reported demands that the PM candidate should be like Atal Bihari Vajpayee he replied, "The God has not made all the persons similar to one another."

When asked how would the BJP take on Rahul Gandhi after he is declared as the PM candidate of the Congress he said let him come in the field first.

He said the BJP never diluted its issues like Ram Janm Bhoomi or Article 370. The party did not back out from its commitment. But it needed a clear majority to implement the same. The party would try again in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections to get a clear majority.

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