Veteran Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Shanta Kumar, who played a crucial role in striking a truce between party patriarch LK Advani and saffron party's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, on Monday said the present day circumstances compelled him to bring the two leaders together.
On his open criticism of Modi after 2002 Godhra riots after which he had resigned from the union cabinet, Shanta said circumstances were very different at that time and he said what he felt was right.
“Everybody should have courage to speak the truth whatever the circumstances are. In those circumstances what I felt was wrong, I spoke against that,” Shanta said, adding that he had always spoken the truth and many a time had paid the price for that.
“But now the circumstances have changed. What happened are things of past and we are looking forward forgetting that all,” he added.
Heaping praises on Modi for his emergence as the most popular leader from the low of 2002, Shanta said the Gujarat chief minister has become the prime minister candidate of all parties.
“We want him as PM, they don't want, but he is the most discussed leader at present,” he added.
Shanta said Modi was the most criticised leader after Godhra riots and even he was denied visas by many countries. Even after facing all odds, he has emerged as the most popular leader in the country.
“He has done a miracle through his work. The common masses have projected him as a leader and this has happened for the first time in the history of Indian democracy,” said Shanta.
Unleashing a scathing attack on the central government, Shanta said an unprecedented situation was prevailing in the country where even the Prime Minister's role has come under scanner in a corruption case.
He said the property (coal blocks) worth Rs 50 lakh crore were allotted without any auction and when the Supreme Court intervened and ordered investigations, the files disappeared mysteriously from the Prime Minister's Office (PMO), but nobody was held responsible.
“There is no government. Corruption is at its peak. There is complete chaos,” Shanta said, adding that the next general elections are going to be decisive as the common masses are striving for a complete change and want to be free from corruption and inflation.
Confident that the BJP will emerge as the single largest party in the country despite dominance of regional parties in some areas, Shanta said the Congress lacks leader and has also lost image.
“We will gain unexpectedly in the upcoming elections and regional parties will have no other option but to join us,” said Shanta, adding that the situation is like 1977 when the entire opposition had come together to oust Congress of power.
“The BJP is the only option and political compulsion also while the third front has no future. People will themselves come to join us,” he added.