Narendra Modi meets Vajpayee, Advani with an eye on LS polls



New Delhi: Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, who is being projected by a section within the BJP as the party's prime ministerial candidate for the next Lok Sabha polls, on Tuesday met a host of top leaders including Atal Behari Vajpayee and LK Advani.

Here to attend the BJP Parliamentary Board meeting, Modi utilised the opportunity to spend the entire day with the top leaders whose support he would require at the time the party decides on its Prime Ministerial candidate.

Today's meetings assume significance as Modi is reportedly pushing the party hard to declare him as BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate ahead of the general elections.

Modi has asked top party leaders to "effectively use the failures of the UPA government" and also project the successes of the BJP-led governments in various states and achievements during the previous NDA regime, party sources said.

He also called for making optimum use of media, including social media, to put forth the party's views before the public in an aggressive way, they said.

This was the first time that Modi attended the BJP Parliamentary Board, the top decision-making body of the party, after he was nominated as its member by party president Rajnath Singh recently.

Modi met former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee at his residence and sought his blessings. Vajpayee is indisposed for sometime now.

Soon after his arrival in Delhi, the Gujarat Chief Minister headed straight to Advani's residence and spent some 40 minutes with him and later termed the meeting as "wonderful".

"In Delhi today. Had a wonderful meeting with Advaniji on arrival at Delhi," Modi said on Twitter after meeting Advani.

He then headed towards former BJP President Nitin Gadkari's residence and spent about an hour with him. Gadkari is considered close to the RSS and his support is crucial to Modi.

While these meetings were scheduled before BJP Parliamentary Board meetings, he met party president Rajnath Singh soon after the meeting and had lunch with him.

The Gujarat Chief Minister also spent almost two hours with BJP's General Secretary (Organisation) Ram Lal, who is also considered close to the RSS.

Modi discussed internal party affairs with Ram Lal, as also the party's strategy for the forthcoming 'Jail bharo' agitation from May 27 to June 2 against Prime Minister Manmohan Singh over the coal block issue, the sources said.

PTI