Narendra Modi calls Patel ‘Ahmedmian’, says his denial sounds ‘fishy’

National
Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday took his attack on Ahmed Patel to the latter's home district of Bharuch, describing him as "Ahmedmian", insisting that Patel is the Congress's chief ministerial candidate, and saying there was something fishy in Patel's very denial that he was a contender for that post.

"Ahmedmian Patel says he does not want to be chief minister. But the Congress has already set the stage to make him the chief minsiter. Dal ma kaink kalu jaroor chhey" (something is definitely fishy about this), Modi said at an election rally in Rajpipla town of Narmada district, before carrying on the attack in Jambusar of Bharuch.

Modi has been targeting Patel since Friday, after filing his nomination from Maninagar in Ahmedabad. He alleged that Patel, an MP, wants to be chief minister and that this is the reason the Congress has not declared its candidate for that post. In a written statement on Friday, Patel, political secretary to Sonia Gandhi, rejected Modi's allegation and said he prefers to keep away from the politics of power.

In Bharuch, Modi said, "Behind the curtain, the Congress is hatching a plan to make Ahmedmian Patel its chief minister. That's what I had said in Ahmedabad, following which Patel came running and said he doesn't have any such aspiration... If someone says he doesn't have any aspiration, it means something is fishy. But in the Congress, everything is fishy."

Modi challenged the Congress to spell out its chief ministerial candidate. He mocked the Congress for having failed not only when it was in power but also when in opposition.

"...The Congress has failed as an opposition party... The role of the opposition is important, but there should be no place for negativity in politics. Yet, for the last 12 years, the Congress has done only one thing — used all sorts of abusive terms from the dictionary for Modi," he said.

"How can those who cannot even win the trust of their workers win the trust of the people?" he said, referring to dissidence within the Congress.

Modi also accused the Congress-led UPA of placing hurdles before his government's plan to lay pipelines to supply cooking gas to households. "The last time I came here (in August 2009), I promised you piped gas. I want to lay a network of pipelines to supply you LPG. However, the Centre says it is its prerogative to lay pipelines and the Gujarat government can't do it," he said.

The rallies in Rajpipla and Jambusar were the first two of six on Modi's itinerary for Sunday.

With PTI inputs

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