Millennium Post

Nitish queers pitch for Modi

‘Only one who can carry with him all the diverse sections of people can become the leader of the nation like Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who treated governance as Rajdharma,’ said Kumar, indirectly recalling that Vajpayee had accused Modi of having failed in Rajdharma by failing to protect minorities during the 2002 post-Godhra riots.

After deliberations at the concluding session of the two-day national executive meeting of Janata Dal (United) here, the party set an eight-month deadline for its senior partner to decide on the prime ministerial candidate with the pre-condition that the person should be committed to the national agenda of governance of NDA which means keeping out the contentious issues of Ram Temple at Ayodhya, abrogation of Article 370 and introduction of Uniform Civil Code.

Not happy at Kumar’s vocal criticism of the aspirations of Narendra Modi, BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman said: ‘It is unfortunate that while concentrating their energies on our chief ministers they are diluting the focus of removing the UPA. We reject all unfounded inferences against Narendra Modi.’

The Bihar chief minister made it amply clear that they would leave the alliance if there is a deviation from the fundamental principles. ‘Compromises are made in politics but there are certain fundamental principles, (like) compromising with secularism to remain in power... no we will never do it. If our views are ignored then we will take a step. We will decide according to the situation and time as to what to do,’ said Kumar in his 40-minute-long speech heavily peppered with anti-Modi sentiments.

Taking a dig at the Gujarat chief minister, Kumar said, ‘Nobody should think that the country can be run on one’s own diktats; sometimes you will have to wear a cap, sometimes you will have to sport a tilak’. Modi during his sadbhavana fast in 2011, had refused to put on a skull cap offered by a Muslim cleric. The Bihar chief minister, criticising the development model of Gujarat, said,’A state can’t be called developed if it is being plagued from malnourishment and lack of drinking water.’ He said Gujarat’s development is attributable to its geographical location.

Ruling himself out from the prime ministerial race, the Bihar chief minister said,’We are not having any such illusions about our strength. If we nurse any such illusion, we will meet the same fate as HD Devegowda, AK Gujral, Chaurdhary Charan Singh and Chandrashekhar. This is the only truth,’ he said.
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