I will not divide country in name of secularism : Hindu Nationalist Leader “Modi”

downloadNEW DELHI -Pitching for a ‘Team India’, Bharatiya Janata Party prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi said on Friday his appeal would not be to Hindus and Muslims but to the entire people of the country.

Holding that the country has been divided in the name of secularism, Modi said: “I cannot accept a divide between brothers of the country in the name of secularism. In the name of secularism, the nation has been divided.”

“I will never commit that crime. Neither will I say anything to Muslims nor to Hindus. I will just address 1.25 billion Indians,” he said in an interview to Network 18.

He was replying to a question on whether he would make an appeal to Muslims in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, from where he is contesting the Lok Sabha poll.

The BJP prime ministerial candidate said he was ready to face defeat but would not practice the politics of identity. The Gujarat chief minister said he wanted to create a ‘Team India’ which would include the prime minister and all chief ministers.

“It will be like a family,” he said. Referring to a just-released book by Sanjaya Baru, Minister Manmohan Singh’s former media adviser, Modi said it “reveals that one family has been running the country. This tradition of governing the country from one power centre has adversely affected the nation”.

Modi said it has become a fashion in the country to blame the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). “Whenever Congress sees bad days, they blame the RSS, which is a cultural organisation.

He said the RSS was an organisation dedicated to the betterment of the country. “They should be appreciated for their good work. I know of many RSS people who are living in remote areas to help people”.

On foreign policy, Modi said that trade, commerce and technology would be the driving factors in Indo-US diplomatic relations if the BJP came to power.

“It is in India’s interest to promote trade, commerce and technology. We will do whatever is necessary to that effect,” he said adding that the parameters of diplomacy have changed drastically in the post-globalisation era.

On economic policy, a pan-India goods and services tax with the support of state governments and a push for infrastructure and privatisation of state units without politics were among Modi’s assurances if voted to power.

He also said the entire gamut of foreign equity needed re-evaluation, even as his pro-people, pro-jobs government will not cut subsidies but shun crony capitalism.

Pressing for corruption-free politics, Modi said he looked forward to creating a system where there was little scope for crime and corruption.

“We cannot ensure 100 per cent cleansing of political malpractices but we would stress on preventive measures so that the scope for crime and corruption is negligible,” he added.

He said if the BJP came to power, he would send a list of tainted MPs to the Supreme Court.

Separately, Modi has expressed the hope that if he comes to power, he would get cooperation of Mamata Banerjee government in creating a conducive atmosphere for industrialisation in West Bengal, including resolving the Singur problem, says a report from Kolkata.

“I hope I will get all sorts of cooperation from West Bengal chief minister in solving the Singur tangle. Not only Singur, I hope I will get cooperation from the state government in creating a conducive atmosphere for industrialisation in the state. Hope Trinamool Congress will not indulge in vote bank politics on the question of development of the state”, he told Bengali daily Anandabazar Patrika.

Separately, buoyed by the high turnout of voters, Modi said it appeared that BJP-led National Democratic Alliance was on its way to form federal government and asked people to ensure 300 seats for it in Lok Sabha.

“Poll held so far in different states suggest that an NDA federal government is going to be formed,” he said at an election meeting in Akbarpur in Uttar Pradesh.

Separately, Modi hit out at Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and said when one has to be tough on rapists, Mulayam is soft on them, says a report from Etwah.

“We have to be tough on rapists, but Mulayam is very soft on them,” Modi said addressing a rally.

Separately, Modi said that, if voted to power, he would give priority to preventing corruption in future before addressing the old cases and would be ready to face investigation if charges are levelled against him ‘professionally’, says a New Delhi report.

Source: Oman Tribune