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Advani a nationalist: Naqvi

June 08, 2005 13:55 IST

A day after Bharatiya Janata Party chief Lal Kishenchand Advani resigned from the party's presidentship after coming under attack for his comments praising Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, senior BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said Advani's is a nationalist and he does not need to prove it to anyone.

Also see: Advani won't take back resignation -- Aide

Commenting in the public for the first time on Advani's comments describing Jinnah as secular and a nationalist, Naqvi said:  "After the Rath Yatra [from Somnath to Ayodhya in 1990], some people described him [Advani] as communal. After the Pakistan yatra, he has been dubbed secular. These comments will not affect his strong nationalistic image."

Naqvi was speaking to reporters after attending a meeting of senior leaders at party vice-president Venkaiah Naidu's residence in New Delhi.

Also see: Advani quit over Togadia's 'traitor' tag

"Advani was always a nationalist, is a nationalist and will always remain a nationalist," Naqvi said.

He urged Advani to withdraw his resignation.

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