Narendra Modi's fast on Saturday drew sharp reactions from major political parties with Congress saying fasts do not lessen Gujarat chief minister's "crimes" and Samajwadi Party attributing it to "power struggle" within the Bharatiya Janata Party.
"Modi is feeling the need to fast, which means he has realised his involvement in crimes in Gujarat but fast cannot change anyone's character. Fast does not lessen Modi's crimes," Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi said.
Samajwadi Party general secretary Mohan Singh said Modi has "no moral right" to fast as he has not followed Rajdharma and still lots of women were running from pillar to post for justice including the wife of former home minister Haren Pandya. He claimed the fast is aimed at foiling L K Advani's attempt to bring himself to the forefront as BJP's prime ministerial candidate.
"The fast was reflective of the power struggle in the BJP with Modi wanting to grab the centrestage at a time when Advani is re-asserting himself," the SP leader said. Janata Dal (United) President Sharad Yadav dismissed the publicity surrounding the fast. "Seventy to eighty per cent of people make a living at Rs 20 a day. 80 per cent people fast daily. The majority of people of the country fast regularly whether they do it for half-day or full-day. Nobody talks about them but fasts by individuals are discussed," Yadav said.
BJP on the other hand termed the fast as "historic" and party leaders L K Advani and Arun Jaitely praised the political leadership of Modi.