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In poll year, Congress ad praises Modi

In a possibly embarrassing gaffe, the main opposition Congress has praised Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi in an advertisement in this election year.

india Updated: Jan 28, 2012 00:56 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times

What the Gujarat Congress intended as subtle digs at Narendra Modi ended up as lavish praise for the chief minister in a state where assembly elections are due in December.

A two-page pullout inserted by the Congress in local Gujarati dailies on Republic Day Thursday described the BJP’s Modi as a “so-called good organiser and election strategist”. It mentioned his achievements, including organising of investors’ summits, setting up of a biotechnology department and promoting festivals in the state.

The pullout, ‘Gujarat: Progressive Since Inception’, highlights the major achievements of all governments from 1962, when Gujarat was formed.

A Congress functionary admitted the party had blundered. “We put out factual details but it has caused embarrassment.”

However, Gujarat Congress president Arjun Modhvadia was in denial mode. “If you read the language, it’s very subtle and sarcastic. We have highlighted the fact that Gujarat has always been progressive from the beginning, irrespective of which party has been in power,” he said.

“Our pullout stressed that instead of focusing on governance, the chief minister has promoted festivals,” he added.

First Published: Jan 27, 2012 19:49 IST