N. Ram, Chairman, Kasturi & Sons Ltd., publishers of The Hindu, on Monday said lack of expertise and “knowledge deficit” of Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi will surely make an impact.

Referring to several slips made by the Gujarat Chief Minister during his public addresses, Mr. Ram said, “Mr. Modi has a knowledge deficit for a politician, if I want to put it lightly.” He said they were serious matters to be attended to.

“The answer to the question as to which will be the single largest party, it is the BJP. President Pranab Mukherjee will call the BJP and it is also certain that Mr. Modi will be called to form the government,” he told members of the Rotary Club of Bangalore here while speaking on ‘India votes: key issues and the road ahead’.

Mr. Ram said the issues of concerns would, however, be about stability and internal constraints of the government.

It would be a government not made by a single party or single coalition, one has to be sceptical about the numbers, he said.

Referring to the delay in BJP releasing its manifesto, Mr. Ram said the party had to reconcile two ends—to somehow overcome the 2002 taint and project Mr. Modi as the new Messiah and the other to include [the agenda of] BJP’s movement which was highly divisive.

Earlier, Mr. Ram said it was out of question that the Indian National Congress would be back to power. The United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government initially seemed to show some promise, through the common minimum programme and some efficient legislation. However, there was a decline in performance in UPA II. It was also marked by the choicest scams.

“Corruption is, however, not an issue across the country,” Mr. Ram said. “The issue is price rise — increase in the prices of essential commodities. Generation of regular and decent employment is also an issue. All over the country, anti-Congressism is high comparable to the 1999 elections [when the Congress got 114 seats].

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