New Delhi : For the BJP’s prime ministerial aspirant Narendra Modi it is a mother’s protective love for her son and not any concern for democratic traditions that has stopped the Congress from naming Rahul Gandhi as its prime ministerial candidate.
Ever since the decision by the Congress president Sonia Gandhi a few days ago not to name Rahul, the BJP has been targeting it for being scared of a possible defeat. But in his agenda setting address to the party’s national council, Modi deftly infused the mother’s love. ”When failure is so apparent, will a mother sacrifice her son?” he observed. “Madam Sonia is concerned about her son, she wants to protect him, ‘mere bete ko bachao’,” he added.
With his trademark barbs, the BJP leader trashed the Congress argument that it was for the parliamentary party to decide the prime ministerial candidate. Delving into its history of appointing prime ministers, Modi cited three instances — Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru in 1947, Rajiv Gandhi in 1984 and Manmohan Singh in 2004 — when either the will of the parliamentary party was ignored or there was no meeting at all to elect the prime minister.
Modi also made a virtue of the derogatory tea-boy remarks that have been directed against him by senior Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar by introducing an element of class conflict. “Perhaps, someone hailing from a big family finds it a matter of shame to fight against the son of someone who sold tea in railway compartments, or whose mother worked in neighbourhood homes. How can they fight against someone like that,” he added.
‘Woh naamdar hain, main kaamdar hoon,” he said while delivering the defining punch line. However, even as he devoted the bulk of his 80-minute address narrating his superiority as a prime ministerial candidate and outlining his agenda, Modi was realistic enough to exhort the party cadres to work at the booth level to ensure that an electoral victory is actually delivered. “Électoral victory is achieved on the polling day, and the polling booth is the mother of victory. So we should guard and protect the polling booth,” he said.