Though, while referring to the Telegraph, the deputy chief minister of Bihar, Sushil Kumar Modi, on Wednesday flatly denied that he had given any interview to any newspaper, yet it was not the first time that he had spoken on the line of Nitish Kumar on the issue of Gujarat chief minister, Narendra Modi.
This change of gear by the deputy chief minister has come as a surprise as it was only on June 13, 2010 that he publicly shared stage with Narendra Modi in Patna’s Gandhi Maidan. That was only a day after Nitish Kumar cancelled the dinner with the BJP bigwigs, including the Gujarat chief minister. All these leaders were present in Patna on the occasion of the two-day (June 12-13) national executive of the party.
Nitish Kumar might have abruptly cancelled the June 12 dinner only a few hours before, the truth is that BJP patriarch, Lal Krishna Advani, and Narendra Modi were the only two leaders who were put up at the state guest house, while the rest of them stayed at Maurya Hotel, where the national executive took place. So whether Nitish broke breads with them or not the two were definitely the state guest during that occasion.
At the public meeting on June 13 evening Sushil Modi was the hero as he was the senior most state leader there. Except Lal Krishna Advani, no other BJP leader took the name of Nitish Kumar even once during the speech. All of them gave credit to Sushil Modi––and not Nitish Kumar––for the development of Bihar. Narendra Modi, in particular, showered praise on Bihar deputy chief minister for whatever the state had achieved in the last five years (till then).
The Gujarat chief minister was given maximum amount of time to speak––double than Advani and Sushma Swaraj. He spoke on all the issues––regional, national and international. In a way the BJP gave the signal that whatever be Nitish Kumar’s opinion about him, the party has no hesitation in projecting the Gujarat chief minister as the future leader.
Sushil Modi was witness to all that what happened––in fact he was party to it. But then why has he developed cold feet over Bada (senior) Modi now. All these months he has been busy paraphrasing His Master’s Voice in Bihar.
True people have short memory and anything can happen in politics. Yes, it is also true that the same Nitish Kumar openly shook hands with Narendra Modi in an election rally of the National Democratic Alliance in Punjab in May 2009. But that was a different period, and Nitish belongs to a different party––Janata Dal (United).
How can Sushil Modi, as a senior BJP leader, directly or indirectly stonewall the visit to Bihar of a top leader of his own party. It can be argued that by April’s Hunkar Rally in Bihar Narendra Modi may cease to be the chief minister of Gujarat. Politics is a game of uncertainty and he may lose the Dec Assembly election. It is also true that he may thus lose his bargaining position and may be out of the race for the post of prime minister.
But then who can deny that even in that case Narendra Modi would remain as one of the top-most leaders of the biggest opposition party of the country. The million dollars question is: Why Chota (Junior) Modi loves to associate himself with the leader of much smaller alliance partner, the Janata Dal (United).