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Advani hails Modi but cautions BJP against over-confidence

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, January 19, 2014
First Published: 23:17 IST(19/1/2014) | Last Updated: 23:21 IST(19/1/2014)

On the concluding day of the BJP national council, party patriarch LK Advani sounded a note of caution, even as he applauded Narendra Modi’s management of the poll campaign and the party’s wisdom in naming him the PM candidate.

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“I must declare that I have not seen so much enthusiasm. I congratulate our party president Rajnath Singh and other colleagues who decided that we would make Modi the PM,” said Advani, who had initially opposed naming Modi for the top job. "We lost the 2004 elections because we had become over-confident. This time, we have to ensure that we do not become over-confident and fight the elections with only with confidence."

Advani praised Modi for his track record in governance in Gujarat as well as the crowds his rallies attract.

Speaking on the BJP’s political resolution, leader of opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj asserted the party will win “more than 272 seats in 2014 Lok Sabha polls”.

Swaraj also praised Modi, saying he has shown strength of character during the last 12 years as he fought false charges, which had accused him of collusion in the 2002 Gujarat riots and came out triumphant.

Attacking the UPA’s record, Swaraj said the Congress shied away from naming party vice president Rahul Gandhi as its PM candidate, as it foresaw a defeat in the polls. "The battle will be between our visible leader and their invisible leader. The truth is that Congress is scared and refused to declare its leader fearing defeat."

Rajya Sabha deputy opposition leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said the massive turnout for Modi everywhere indicated the mood of the country.

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