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Home > News > PTI

Lead Hindutva-oriented third force in Gujarat: Uma tells Keshubhai

November 01, 2007 21:10 IST

Bharatiya Janshakti leader Uma Bharti on Thursday threw her weight behind dissident BJP leader Keshubhai Patel ahead of the assembly poll in Gujarat. Bharti said that Patel should lead a third Hindutva-oriented force to oust Chief Minister Narendra Modi and his 'sham' Hindutva.

"The state should have a Hindutva-oriented third force as an alternative so that Modi does not retain power and the Congress is prevented from gaining ground," she said.

"Leaders like Keshubhai Patel should come out and take the lead of this third front. I will be meeting him (in this regard)," said the fiery sanyasin who has shifted her focus to the political scene in Gujarat.

"Many committed BJP and Sangh Parivar workers and even the people of the state are confused. They do not know what to do. They neither want Modi to be the chief minister again nor Congress to be voted to power."

"People of the state want Hindutva but not Moditva. Modi's Hindutva is a sham which will hurt Hinduism in the long run. His brand of Hindutva is a hypocrisy which has brought shame and not pride," said Bharti, who left the BJP two years ago.

"More Hindus have died in Gujarat than Muslims. More than 100 priests have been killed and more than 400 sadhus have died. There are cases against more than 30,000 Hindus (related to post-Godhra riots)," she said

"We want Modi out but are against Congress gaining in the process," Bharti said, adding that she has been invited to the state by sadhus and some BJP and RSS workers.

"What I want in Gujarat is the Tamil Nadu model where two dominant parties with the same ideology fight for power. Here also, that thing can be replicated when two parties with Hindutva ideology can be the main contender for power," Bharti said.

"What is being mistaken by some people here is that loyalty to a party is being taken as loyalty to the ideology. I have told them that you should have loyalty to the ideology and not to the party," declared Bharti.

She said her party will decide the names of the candidates after meeting some Gujarat leaders. "Our decision to contest elections depends on the leaders of the state," she said without identifying these leaders.

"We can still make a mark in the election if people support us. Even if we get some 30 seats in the Assembly, all the elected BJP MLAs will come with us as they do not want Modi as chief minister," Bharti said in reply to a question on her party's late entry in Gujarat.

The former Union minister said, "Modi came to power first time by edging out Keshubhai, second time in the name of Godhra and now he wants to retain power by using Ram Sethu. The BJP has no right to speak about Ram Sethu as it had given clearance to the project during the NDA rule."

To a question on how her Hindutva was different from that of Modi's, she said, "My idea of Hindutva is compassionate, has respect for all religions and shuns all forms of violence."

On a question on rebel BJP MLAs who were planning to form an alliance with Congress for the polls, she said, "They can do that as they have no option."

"Nobody from RSS has attempted to stop me from coming to Gujarat," she said when asked to comment on reports that the saffron organisation had tried to convince her to remain away from Gujarat.

Earlier, Bharti met Vitthal Pandya, father of former state home minister and BJP leader Haren Pandya, who was shot dead in March 2003.

"There was no threat to Haren Pandya from terrorists. He was a dynamic leader and his only enemy was Modi. The truth behind the murder of Pandya should come out," she said.

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