Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi on Thursday edged out Jaiprakash Narayan at a function held to celebrate the socialist’s 110th birthday anniversary in Patna.
Even in his absence, slogans like “Narendra Modi zindabad” and “Desh ka pradhan mantri kaisa ho, Narendra Modi jaisa ho” rent the air — much to the embarrassment of several senior BJP leaders like party general secretary and in-charge of Bihar affairs Anantha Kumar, deputy chief minister, Sushil Kumar Modi and state party chief C.P. Thakur who had gathered at the BJP’s youth wing meeting to celebrate JP’s birth anniversary.
Some senior party functionaries came down from the dais and tried to pacify the ecstatic cadre, but their efforts went in vein. Anantha said: “People from Gujarat and Bihar have always stood together to support major national movements. Bihar was the epicentre of the JP Movement but it began from Ahmedabad.”
He added: “All BJP-ruled states — Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar — were doing far better than the ones ruled by the Congress.”
Responding to the overtly rapturous crowd cheering for Narendra Modi, Anantha, in a bid to keep them in good humour, said: “Yuddh or ishq mein ishara kafi hota hai (Indications are quite meaning-ful in love and war). However, the south Bangalore MP soon caught up with the political reality in the state. “We have the JD(U)-BJP government here. Our alliance is quite intact for we will contest all the 40 seats together,” he said.