After Modi, Delhi college invites PM to address students

After Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi addressed students of Sri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC) with economic development-oriented ‘Moditva’, the college has approached economist Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to share his views.

It is learnt that BJP leader Arun Jaitley-led patrons of the SRCC have requested Manmohan Singh to address the annual convocation of the prestigious business college on March 6. BJP sources said the choice of topic on which the PM would like to speak on, if he agrees, has been left to him. The college will know the PM’s response in a few days.

 Modi had managed to convert his maiden speech before a select gathering outside Gujarat into a publicity exercise. The chief minister was invited by the students association of the college which faced criticism for playing host to a politician who is still to come out of the Godhra communal riots taint. The Prime Minister is being invited by the college governing council.

An alumnus of SRCC, Jaitley is also a member of the college governing council. Sources said Modi had accepted the invite to deliver his speech only after getting a nod from Jaitley.

If the PM agrees to visit the college in North Campus, the academic venture will be turned into a political event given the fact that a comparison with Modi is bound to take place, said party sources.  Economist PM vs pro-development CM debate in the media cannot be ruled out, it is said.

The college in the past has invited ministers and leaders, including President Pranab Mukherjee, former President A P J Abdul Kalam and finance minister P Chidambaram.
Modi is expected to speak at the three-day BJP national executive and council meeting, starting from March 1 in the national capital. 

The chief minister, who was prevented from speaking in the open session of the party’s conclave at Surajkund late last year, is likely to address intellectuals this time, said sources.

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