Modi likely to lead BJP's 2014 campaign

Modi likely to lead BJP's 2014 campaign

Modi likely to lead BJP's 2014 campaign

Emboldened by the euphoria around Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi and the
forecast of a hat trick for him in Gujarat, the BJP is setting stage to announce that the aggressive leader would be made party’s chief campaigner for the 2014 elections.

Though the announcement likely to be made next month, will project Modi as the party’s prime ministerial candidate, the BJP will refrain from making a formal announcement to this effect taking into consideration the dislike nurtured by allies like Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, for Modi.

Talking to Deccan Herald on Tuesday, BJP sources said: “We are closely watching how the Congress has started projecting Rahul Gandhi over the last few months. We have no other option but to project an alternative. At present, we have no one else to take on Rahul, but Modi.”

The development comes a day after exit polls indicated a landslide victory for Modi in the Gujarat Assembly elections. A fortnight ago, leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha, Sushma Swaraj endorsed Modi’s candidature as the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate while campaigning in Gujarat. Results of the Gujarat elections will be declared on December 20. The exit polls predicted around 119 to 140 seats for the BJP in a House of 182. The BJP had won 117 seats in 2007.

“After Thursday, when the Gujarat election results will be declared, several possibilities can unfold. The results can have a far-reaching impact on national politics. It will shape the future course of action for the BJP and the NDA,” a senior BJP leader said.

However, a section of the BJP said:  “Everything depends on the Gujarat outcome. If there is massive victory for the party, there is no stopping Modi. If he gets 130 seats, there is no option but to rally behind him. At the same time, we also have to look at allies, present and future, with Modi as our leader.”

Besides Modi, the party has to take a call on incumbent president Nitin Gadkari.