Modi says nationalism is BJP’s identity; Cong calls remark ‘political deception’ | india-news | Hindustan Times
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Modi says nationalism is BJP’s identity; Cong calls remark ‘political deception’

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said nationalism was the BJP’s identity, and asked the party to be cautious of forces trying to deflect people’s attention from his government’s works.

india Updated: Aug 23, 2016 23:32 IST
Kumar Uttam
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah during a meeting of BJP’s core group from states.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah during a meeting of BJP’s core group from states.(Sushil Kumar/HT Photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said nationalism was the BJP’s identity, and asked the party to be cautious of forces trying to deflect people’s attention from his government’s works.

He referred to the ongoing Tiranga Yatra of BJP MPs, claiming that the event evoked a sense of nationalism and that such “constructive programme” will go on despite challenges.

Giving a pep talk to 350-odd BJP leaders from across the country, Modi said winning election was not just an aim for the BJP but an exercise of national building and strengthening the cause of nationalism.

“Tiranga Yatra united India against forces who are trying to disturb social fabric,” Modi said. His words at the meeting of BJP’s core group from states coincide with the criticism it faces over handling of Kashmir and cow vigilante.

Modi spoke on importance of collective decision making in strengthening organisation and reaching out to poor people.

“We should think of how to create an impression among poor people,” Modi said, as he stressed on communicating with such people in common language. He said most BJP leaders come from a modest background. In his nearly hour-long speech, Modi spoke about strengthening party’s ideology and expanding its base.

The day-long exercise, which also saw BJP leaders getting lesson on use of social media and how state units should function, is the first before next year’s assembly election in six states, including Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat.

He advised party leaders against lobbying of any sorts to secure ticket to contest election and said the level of understanding about the execution of central government’s scheme in respective areas would be a yardstick to finanlise candidates.

Half way through its term at the Centre, the BJP leadership feels it is time to prepare for the 2019 Lok Sabha election.

In his opening address, Shah said BJP has more than 1000 MLAs, more than 300 MPs and government n 13 states. “But, we should try to advance further. For this it is important that government and organisation function smoothly,” he said, saying the core group’s job will be to strengthen the party at the booth level.

“If we are able to achieve this, then a huge change will be witnessed in the party in next 10-15 years,” Shah said. He asked the party to provide a decisive, transparent, corruption free and ideology driven government in the state.

Congress leader Randeep S Surjewala mocked the PM’s statement saying it was “one more act of political deception.

“…Those who had no sacrifice, participation and intent in creating Indian nation state can never be trusted as propagators or champions of nationalism. (The) Modi establishment has converted India into a nation state where liberal traditions are under serious assault and mockery of law is rampant,” he said.