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BJP LOST in 2004 due to Modi, Gujarat riots: Nitish

Last updated on: June 20, 2012 15:49 IST

BJP LOST in 2004 due to Modi, Gujarat riots: Nitish

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The Janata Dal-United on Wednesday took Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi to task, holding him responsible for the Bharatiya Janata Party's defeat in the 2004 Lok Sabha polls.

"Had Atal Bihari Vajpayee sacked the Modi government after the 2002 riots in Gujarat, NDA (National Democratic Alliance) would have retained power in the 2004 elections," said JD-U spokesperson Shivanand Tiwari.

Fully backing the remarks made by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Tiwari said the JD-U has an alliance with the BJP, and not with Modi.

"Whether we remain in the NDA or not, we will not compromise on secularism and social justice. We have an alliance with the BJP and not with Modi," he told media personnel in New Delhi.

Nitish Kumar too joined the heated verbal debate, claiming that Vajpayee wanted to sack Modi for not following rajdharma during the Gujarat riots.

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Image: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar


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'BJP LOST in 2004 due to Modi, Gujarat riots'

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Meanwhile, JD-U Member of Legislative Council Devesh Chandra Thakur said it is quite clear that the Gujarat chief minister has the backing of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.

"Everyone knows that they are backing Narendra Modi. Modi has a RSS background. So they will definitely come out in support of Narendra Modi. There is no surprise element in this. That is quite obvious and quite natural," he said.

Thakur made it clear that the ideologies of his party and that of the RSS-BJP were very different.

"I don't think anyone in this country will be surprised by the statement of RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat. Everyone, who knows India and who knows about this country, knows the ideology of RSS. We differ slightly on our definition of hindudtvad. I personally feel that Hinduism and hindudtvad is the most liberal religion or ideology on this earth".

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Image: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat


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'BJP LOST in 2004 due to Modi, Gujarat riots'

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"Unfortunately, the ideology of RSS narrows down the concept of Hinduism in this country. We do not subscribe to such narrow ideologies and I would beg to differ from Mohan Bhagwatji," he added.

Earlier today, Mohan Bhagwat came out in full support of Modi as the BJP's prime ministerial candidate and took Nitish Kumar to task over his recent comments.

Kumar had said that the NDA's prime ministerial candidate in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections should be ''secular and liberal''.

Emphasising that the country should have a prime minister who propounds Hindutva, Bhagwat said, "To keep alive the Hindutva ideology, the Hindu samaaj should come together. And the country should have a prime minister who believes in that ideology or propounds that view."

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Image: Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi


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'BJP LOST in 2004 due to Modi, Gujarat riots'

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Kumar had earlier insisted that the NDA should name its prime ministerial candidate before the 2014 Lok Sabha polls and the candidate must have secular credentials and a liberal frame of mind.

His candid comments appear to be aimed at setting the rules of the game before the NDA starts to mull over the strategy to take on the United Progressive Alliance in 2014.

The latest war-of-words seems to have been sparked off by Modi's recent comments on Bihar.

Speaking at a public rally in Rajkot, Modi had reportedly said, "Bihar, at one point of time, was a political and spiritual leader of the country, but it slipped into socio-economical backwardness ever since caste politics took centre-stage".

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