Notwithstanding his spirited attacks on Mayawati, Mamata Banerjee and Jayalalithaa during campaigning for the Lok Sabha polls, the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi suggested Thursday that such strong criticism did not automatically shut the door on possible post-poll alliances with their parties.
“This can also be a strategy to keep the door open,” Modi responded cryptically when asked if his attacks did not close the door on tie-ups with these parties, if need be, after the elections.
“Whatever I wanted to explain, I have. This can also be a tactic to keep the door open,” Modi said in an interview to Times Now editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami. “I won’t explain it now but will do it after May 12.”
The Gujarat chief minister also sought to suggest that post-poll politics need not necessarily be scarred by verbal duels that took place during the heat of election campaigning. “Politics isn’t conducted on the basis of what is said in the course of election campaigns,” he said.
Modi, however, stressed that the BJP has gone to the polls with the largest number of pre-poll allies and expressed confidence that the NDA would get a clear majority on its own.
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“For the first time in India’s political history, the BJP has 25 parties in a pre-poll alliance in the electoral fray. Even during the NDA regime, we didn’t have a pre-poll alliance. The Congress too has never had a pre-poll alliance on this scale,” Modi said.
Questions about post-poll alliances, he said, were “irrelevant” as the BJP expected to get a clear mandate. “BJP is winning with a clear majority and we will be forming the strongest and most stable government since Rajiv Gandhi’s government,” he said.
The BJP leader defended his attack on Priyanka Vadra saying he was bound to react when allegations are levelled against him even if the person is not in active politics.
“If you are making serious allegations against me then can I not respond? Shouldn’t I respond?” Modi asked.
He also sought to defend his spin on “low-level politics” as an allusion to his caste, claiming that as someone who was schooled in Gujarati language, this was his perception of “neech rajniti”.
Modi, however, sought to suggest he had no personal animosity towards the Gandhis and said that he had even sent a bouquet of flowers to Sonia Gandhi after it became public that she was ill.
“But you must know that when the news of Sonia Madam being ill came to light, I was the first person, not even senior Congressmen, I was the first one to send her a ‘get well soon’ message with a bouquet,” Modi claimed.
The BJP’s prime ministerial candidate also suggested that India should be open to giving refuge to those who believe in the Hindu way of life and are being persecuted in other parts of the world.