The Indian Herald

The Indian Herald

January 14, 2009

India Inc batting for Narendra Modi as PM irks BJP

The statements of Anil Ambani and Sunil Mittal projecting Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as future Prime Minister of the country have sent the BJP in a tizzy.

The subtle suggestion of Reliance came at the Global Investors' Summit in Ahmedabad that has attracted Rs 12 lakh crore investment commitments within two days as global meltdown seems to have left Gujarat untouched.

The chairman of Reliance ADA group, Anil Ambani, left little for imagination. He said that one can just visulaise what Narendra Modi can do as leader of the entire country when as Chief Minister he has done wonders.

The head of Bharti Airtel, Sunil Mittal, said that Modi should be the CEO of the country. The other top industrialists also heaped praises on the Gujrat Chief Minister who has lately dissosciated himself from hardline politics and is focusing on governance and development.

The arrest of VHP state leader and the demolition of unauthorised temples was seen as a move by Modi to prove his credentials that he is a no-nonsense man. After the 2002 Gujrat carnage that witnessed killing of hundreds of Muslims across the state, Modi had become the posterboy for champions of militant Hindutva.

But the last few years have seen a shift in his style of functioning. Communal riots haven't occurred and the focus is on better administration and ending redtapism. Now India Inc's endorsement of Modi is seen as a challenge to LK Advani in the party.

The recent announcement of former Vice President Bhairon Singh Shekhawat that he will contest election and is senior to Advani in party hierarchy has already worried the party.

BJP spokesperson Prakash Javdekar said that the statements suggest that there are many politicians within the BJP who are deemed suitable for higher offices like that of Prime Minister but it is not necessary that the party would have a similar view about the leader.

TIH Bureau

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