Narendra Modi first among equals in PM candidate race: Kalyan Singh

Joining the chorus, BJP leader Kalyan Singh said there are a number of able and experienced leaders in the party.

Updated: Apr 20, 2013, 19:21 PM IST

Etah: Joining the chorus, BJP leader Kalyan Singh on Saturday said there are a number of able and experienced leaders in the party, but acceptability of Narendra Modi as prime ministerial candidate is "highest".

The former Uttar Pradesh chief minister told reporters here that Modi is a popular leader of the country, "who is voice of the people".

He termed the Gujarat Chief Minister as `vikas purush`.

On the reports of differences within the NDA over Modi, the Kurmi leader said that tagging him as communal was baseless.

"Gujarat riots were only a reaction of Godhara incident and every action has a reaction," he said.

He said that let the elections come near and everything would be alright in the NDA.

The former CM, however, said that BJP`s PM candidate would be decided by the parliamentary board, and said, "I hope that it would also keep public sentiment into consideration."

On reports of JPC giving clean chit to Prime Minister in its draft report on 2G scam, Singh said that Manmohan Singh could be termed as "honest".

On a question that recent praise of LK Advani by SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav signalled towards the alliance between the two parties, Singh said that the senior BJP leader does not need certificate from anyone.

"There were ideological differences between SP and BJP and the distance between them cannot be bridged."

In reply to another question, Kalyan said that alliance with SP, BSP and Lok Dal was BJP`s "mistake" which will not be repeated again.