Senior BJP leader L.K. Advani’s refusal to admit and accept his party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi’s preeminent position in the BJP is a case of sour grapes and self-defeatism (“Modi is one among three, says Advani,” April 1). Mr. Advani should not forget that Mr. Modi has been a consistent winner from Gujarat. This unstatesman-like behaviour during the process of Mr. Modi’s elevation has robbed Mr. Advani of much of his charisma and political stature. It is best that Mr. Advani now becomes a senior mentor of the party.
Mr. Advani’s comment assumes significance against the backdrop of his being sidelined in the party and being denied the constituency of his choice. Undeniably, he has not concealed his displeasure over the shoddy treatment meted out to him. After all, as the party patriarch he deserves better treatment. The BJP’s prime ministerial candidate would do well to draw a lesson or two from Mr. Advani’s observations and learn to respect his sentiments.
It is a well-known fact — and something too recent for it to slip from public memory — that the Union government had vehemently opposed in court the release of the Italian marines (“Modi to Sonia: come clean on marines,” April 1). Yet, it was the Supreme Court that set aside the protestations and allowed them to visit their country and families on humanitarian grounds. This was also why an angry Supreme Court moved to take quick retaliatory action when the commitment to send the marines back was not kept. So, if Mr. Modi wants to sound the drum of patriotism on the issue of allowing the marines to go home, he should be brave enough to criticise the highest court than launch misplaced and personal attacks on the Congress president for it. A prime ministerial aspirant ought to read the newspapers and verify the facts before speaking on a given subject.