The Telegraph
Wednesday , May 9 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
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BJP split over Choubey’s view

Patna, May 8: The state BJP is divided over the remarks of health minister Ashwini Kumar Choubey, who projected Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi as the future leader of the country at a Bihar Divas function in Surat.

Even as deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi disowned Choubey’s comment, another Bihar minister from the BJP threw his weight behind the health minister.

Strongly defending Choubey, the animal and fish resources minister Giriraj Singh said: “If a BJP leader has said that Narendra Modi is the suitable candidate for the Prime Minister, what is wrong with it? People from other parties should not impose their dadagiri on an alliance partner. Everyone has the right to have his/her opinion and if Choubey holds the opnion that Modi — a party’s revered leader — should be the Prime Minister, what is wrong in it?”

Choubey’s remarks were also welcomed by BJP MLA from Nokha Assembly seat in Rohtas, Rameshwar Chaurasia. Chaurasia asked the JD(U) to mind its “own business” rather than interfering in the matters of the BJP. “When the JD(U) celebrated Bihar Divas in Delhi and Mumbai, they did not invite any BJP leader. But we did not say anything. If our leader has said that Modi is the suitable candidate for the post of Prime Minister, then what’s wrong in that?”

When asked about Choubey’s remarks, Sushil Kumar Modi told The Telegraph: “The BJP has not yet decided the candidate for Prime Minister. The national leadership takes the final decision, so it is premature to say that Modi is the suitable candidate for the post. Many more names will come up during the meeting and the man who will be a candidate for the Prime Ministerial post should be accepted by section of people and all the NDA allies”.

Labour resources minister Janardan Singh Sigriwal said Choubey’s remark is a personal opinion and only national leadership will decide the name of Prime Ministerial candidate.

Tourism minister Sunil Kumar ‘Pintu’ said: “the prime ministerial candidate is decided by the national leadership and a cabinet minister of Bihar cannot decide the name of the Prime Minister.”

BJP MLC Prem Ranjan Patel said development is taking place in both the states. “There is no controversy over the remarks and both leaders are symbols of development and susashan in their respective states,” said Patel.