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HindustanTimes Wed,16 Apr 2014

Modi is India's most popular leader: Rajnath Singh

PTI  New Delhi, April 06, 2013
First Published: 17:16 IST(6/4/2013) | Last Updated: 17:18 IST(6/4/2013)

Amid growing speculation over Narendra Modi's role in the next Lok Sabha polls, BJP president Rajnath Singh on Saturday remained non-committal on the issue of Prime Ministerial candidate even as he hailed the Gujarat chief minister as most popular leader of the country.

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"Nobody can overlook this truth about Modi being India's most popular leader at this moment...There are no two opinions about it," the BJP president told Rajat Sharma in 'Aap Ki Adalat' on India TV.

At the same time, he said the BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate would be decided by its Central Parliamentary Board where even his "personal opinion alone" does not matter.

Praising Modi for his three consecutive victories in the assembly polls, Singh said, "he has brought development model of Gujarat before the world. Just because one of communal riots, he is being vilified."

Singh pointed that there had been many communal riots during the rule of Congress chief ministers, but nobody talks about them.

He took potshot at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who recently remarked at a CII event that no person riding on a horse will come to power and solve problems of India.

"The leader from the BJP, who will come to power in the next elections, will not come riding a horse. He will be a grassroot leader, who has worked for the last 30 to 35 years.

"Unlike people, who have been hardly 5 to 10 years in politics, who studied in England, USA or Italy, and are being projected for the post of Prime Minister," the BJP chief said.

Rejecting reports about infighting in BJP over the issue of Prime Ministerial candidate, Singh claimed that it is the only political party which has "never vertically divided" unlike the Congress or the Communist Party.

"Even Atal ji and Advani ji were there. But they never hankered after posts. Had it been some other party, the party would have been vertically divided," the BJP President said.

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