A day after NDA ally JD(U) virtually opposed Narendra Modi as the possible prime ministerial candidate, another partner Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Monday said it was with BJP and would stand by any decision taken by the opposition alliance in this regard.
“We have no problem if NDA announces its prime ministerial candidate. But NDA will have to meet first (to take a decision),” SAD veteran and Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal told reporters here after a meeting with Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar.
He was asked to respond to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s opposition to his Gujarat counterpart as the possible prime ministerial candidate of NDA.
Though Mr. Badal maintained that SAD has no comments to offer on the spat between JD(U) and BJP, he made it clear that his party is with BJP.
“I have nothing to do with it (BJP-JD(U) spat)...We want to make it clear that we are with BJP. But BJP is yet to take a decision (on the prime ministerial candidate),” he said.
The SAD leader skirted questions on whether BJP leader L K Advani was a better choice as NDA’s prime ministerial candidate.
Meanwhile, the SAD veteran’s son and Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal was more forthcoming on the choice of NDA’s prime ministerial candidate.
“Since BJP is the biggest NDA constituent, I feel it should choose the prime ministerial candidate. Whosoever it is, we are with them,” Mr. Sukhbir said after meeting Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde here.