BJP ‘discovering good qualities’ in Indira, Mamata

Agency News

New Delhi/Nagpur, Jan 7: The pre-Lok Sabha poll 'scenario' is apparently taking an 'interesting turn' day-by-day with the ruling BJP 'finding good' in late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and 'greeting arch-rival Mamata Banerjee with a Prime-ministerial wish.'

A day after West Bengal Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Dilip Ghosh found 'Prime-ministerial qualities' in Trinamool Congress Chairperson and Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, which he later retracted, Union Minister and BJP MP Nitin Gadkari on Sunday 'showered praise' on late Indira Gandhi.

Addressing a gathering of women at the inauguration of an exhibition put up by women Self-Help Groups (SHGs) at Nagpur on Sunday, Mr Gadkari said, 'This nation had leaders like Indira Gandhi. She got the better of many stalwart male leaders of her time.'

'Did Indira Gandhi get any reservation?' he asked.

Mr Gadkari's observation on Indira Gandhi came in connection with his 'reservation' against the reservation policy of the Narendra Modi government.

The BJP has frequently criticised Indira Gandhi, especially for imposition of Emergency.

Later at the gathering, Mr Gankari, however mentioned women leaders from BJP like Sushma Swaraj, Vasundhara Raje and Sumitra Mahajan.

Interestingly, springing a surprise in the political circles - both in the National Capital as well as in Kolkata - Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh greeted Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on her birthday on Saturday along with a 'Prime - ministerial wish'.

On Ms Banerjee's 65th birthday, Mr Ghosh wished her, saying "I wish her sound health and success in life. She is Bengal's face. If anyone from the state gets to become Prime Minister, that would be Mamata. Jyoti Basu missed the chance by a whisker. His party did not let him become the PM. We had Pranab Mukherjee as President of India."

The Bengal BJP president had gone hammer and tongs against the Mamata Banerjee government on several issues earlier.

Mr Ghosh had also alleged the CM was "hiding facts" on the Centre's support to various schemes running in Bengal.

"Such a statement coming from the BJP state president is by itself an admission that Mr Modi is on his way out," senior Congress leader Abdul Mannan opined.

However, later on Sunday, Mr Ghosh retracted his comment saying ' Such things should be taken in good humour.'

As expected, Mr Gadkari's comment on Indira Gandhi has already invited wrath of BJP leadership.

No retraction has, however, come from Mr Gadkari so far. (UNI)