Rajnath dares Oppn to name its PM candidate
Senior BJP leader and Union minister Rajnath Singh Tuesday dared the Opposition to name its prime ministerial candidate if it was sure of victory in the Lok Sabha polls, even as he claimed that a two-thirds majority for the ruling NDA cannot be ruled out.
With only the last phase of the polls to go for 59 seats, he asked the Opposition to not play “hide and seek” with people by not announcing who is its leader.
At a press conference at the BJP headquarters, Singh took a swipe at opposition leaders, saying they are unable to elect a leader as they know that they will not get a majority.
Twenty-one Opposition parties, including the Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party, Rashtriya Lok Dal alliance in Uttar Pradesh and the Trinamool Congress in West Bengal, are expected to meet in New Delhi between the last day of polling on May 19 and when the results are announced on May 23 to work out the modalities of an alternative front. The BJP in 2014 had won a majority with 282 of 543 Lok Sabha seats.
Modi’s leadership compared to lack of any lead face in the rival camp has been one of the key themes of the BJP-led NDA campaign, with its leaders telling voters that there will be chaos and instability if the Opposition comes to power.
Asked about the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party alliance in Uttar Pradesh, he said his party had believed that it will be an “effective” combine, but it has fizzled out and that the BJP has set a target of winning 74 of the state’s 80 seats.
Singh, who was the BJP chief during the 2014 elections, said people are keen to give Modi another term as they have a sense of satisfaction with his tenure.
To a question about a recent Time magazine cover story, which called Modi “divider in chief”, he said the prime minister wants to take everybody along.
Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal and Punjab are among the seven states that will poll in the final phase. The seventh and last phase of the general election is due on May 19. The counting of votes will occur on May 23.