New Delhi, Dec 23: “BJP is on a comeback trail”, is what the party`s senior leader LK Advani had to say at the news of BJP’s triumph in Gujarat. Giving credit to Modi’s development policies, he said that Modi has disapproved the theory that “elections can’t be won on development plank”. “People have voted for his leadership,” he said.
However, surprisingly BJP’s first official response to the party’s stupendous win in the Gujarat assembly elections came not from the Man of the Moment, Narendra Modi, but from party chief Rajnath Singh.
Speaking at a hastily convened press conference Singh said, “I thank the people and the party’s cadre for working towards this victory. It’s the fourth time we have won and I believe our ideology has won and the leadership of Modi.”
Allaying fears that Modi would become too big a leader for the comfort of the central leadership Singh said, “There is no fear in BJP over Modi’s rise. Nobody is bigger than the party. He has done well in making Gujarat a model state in terms of development.”
Meanwhile, senior BJP leader Ravishankar Prasad while addressing the media termed the victory as the new milestone in country’s politics. “Our model of all inclusive growth has worked. The political ramifications of the win go much beyond Gujarat.”
Moreover, high on its success despite the dissidence in the party, BJP has decided to crack its whip on the rebels. Independent reports have suggested that senior party leader Keshubahi Patel and Kashiram Rana, who had been issued notices, would have to go if found guilty of anti-party work.
Predictably feeling proud over Modi’s achievement in Gujarat, the state in-charge and Modi’s chief spin doctor, Arun Jaitley said, “Modi has gained in stature, and it’s not just his charisma that’s at work but more importantly his immense credibility.”
On the other hand, BJP spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy analyzed the win by saying that Modi’s return has proved that development coupled with nationalist agenda works.
Congress accepts verdict
Although upset with the drubbing it has received in the Gujarat assembly elections, the Congress party put forth a brave force and said that it’s a great victory for Modi, not in any sense for the BJP.
On the suggestion that Sonia Gandhi’s Maut ka Saudagar remark would have cost the party dearly, senior leader Kapil Sibal expectedly defended the comment.
“The truth has to be told. We have to fight it up front. Democracy is not about winning or losing a state election.... Modi is something that the Congress abhors," said Sibal.
Modi can’t be defeated: CPM
Commenting on Modi’s victory, the CPM, a key Left ally of the ruling UPA at the Centre, said that the Gujarat Chief Minister cannot be defeated electorally. To defeat Modi, one will have to defeat his ideology, CPM added.