‘My 100-year-old mother was treated in govt hospital…’: PM on ‘brand Modi’ in elections | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

‘My 100-year-old mother was treated in govt hospital…’: PM on ‘brand Modi’ in elections

May 20, 2024 12:51 PM IST

PM Narendra Modi highlighted his extensive experience as evidence of his commitment to public service.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has shared candid reflections on his public life, leadership philosophy, and the “Brand Modi” used in the Lok Sabha elections 2024 and earlier polls. “I don’t know what ‘brand’ is and how it works. People see Modi’s life and his work,” the prime minister said in an interview with news agency PTI when asked about the Bharatiya Janata Party using his name as a brand in election campaigns.

File picture of Prime Minister Narendra Modi meeting his mother Heeraben Modi. (ANI Photo)
File picture of Prime Minister Narendra Modi meeting his mother Heeraben Modi. (ANI Photo)

PM Narendra Modi also highlighted his extensive experience, including 13 years as chief minister of Gujarat and a decade as Prime Minister, as evidence of his commitment to public service.

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The prime minister referred to his late mother, who spent her final days in a government hospital, as a testament to his “unpretentious lifestyle”. "A person, who has worked as CM of a state for 13 years and as PM for 10 years… and his 100-year-old mother spends her last days in a government hospital, then that country doesn’t need a brand; the country can understand that (my) life is somewhat different," Modi said in the interview.

Modi's mother, Heeraben, passed away in 2022. Heeraben used to live with Modi's younger brother, Pankaj Modi, at Raysan village near Gandhinagar. The PM would regularly visit Raysan and spend time with his mother during his Gujarat visits.

Modi also recounted a notable incident from his tenure as Gujarat's chief minister when former Gujarat CM Amarsinh Chaudhary accused him of owning 250 pairs of clothes. Addressing the public accusation head-on, Modi said, "'I accept this accusation, but either the zero (in 250) is wrong, or number ‘2’ is wrong; still I accept the accusation. Then I asked the public… do they want a CM who steals 250 crore or a CM who has 250 clothes?' The crowd's overwhelming support for a leader with integrity over material wealth silenced his critics. The public of Gujarat said in one voice: ‘the CM with 250 clothes will work’. After that, they did not have the courage to level accusations," Modi recalled.

Modi also reassured the nation of his commitment, stating, "I have told the people of this country that I will never do anything with bad intention."

During the interview, Modi asserted that the BJP will emerge as the single-largest party in the south, as he remained unwaveringly confident that his NDA alliance will cross 400 seats in Lok Sabha when election results come out on June 4.

“Our strategy for the entire nation is the same. Phir ek baar modi sarkar. Aur chaar June 400 paar,” Modi said.

Modi said his opponents have created a myth that the BJP has no strength or presence in the southern states. “Look at the 2019 elections. The largest party even then in the south was the BJP. Again, I say this: the largest party in the south this time will be BJP, and its allies will add more (seats) to it,” Modi added.

“We will be the single largest party in Southern India and by an even bigger margin than the last time,” he added.

“We have seen a jump in mind-share already. We will see a big jump in seat share and vote share for us across the region,” Modi said.

Southern India accounts for 131 of the 543 Lok Sabha seats. In the outgoing House, BJP has 29 members besides one independent backed by it, from Karnataka.

(With inputs from agencies)

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