The Supreme Court order in the Gulberg Housing Society case created excitement among BJP cadres about the possible entry of Narendra Modi - the party's poster boy - in the race for the top job ahead of the next Lok Sabha polls.
But Modi himself chose to be cautious, limiting himself to three words: “God is great.” He did not want the party or his supporters to read too much into the court order and whip up “unnecessary hype”.
Even the BJP chose to highlight what Modi and the party saw positive indications emerging out of the order. First, despite years of “rumour mongering and secularist propaganda”, no one could furnish evidence against him.
Second, the alleged attempts to “scuttle” the special investigative team’s report — “because it could not throw up evidence against him” — were nullified as the court asked the trial court to take that report into account before proceeding with the case.
Senior BJP leader LK Advani, besides claiming that never has there been a greater propaganda against any political leader, also hinted that Modi might be given a greater role in running the party. But BJP leaders did not see Modi immediately jumping into the race.
The BJP leaders expected Modi to focus on winning the assembly polls in Gujarat due in December 2012 for the third time, and brace up to face what detractors planned next in the trial court.
Arun Jaitley, leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha who is close to Modi, said, “The BJP has throughout maintained that allegations against Modi are totally false and there is no shred of evidence against him to connect him with the unfortunate riots.”
“There were allegations that Gujarat police's investigations were not proper. The Supreme Court constituted SIT to probe investigations. Propaganda can never be a substitute for evidence and bringing newer dimensions to the case, which Modi's detractors tried to do, did not mean newer evidences (before the apex court). This has been proved today,” said Jaitley.