Modi world’s most popular leader, says Amit Shah

New Delhi, April 6 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the world’s most popular leader, BJP president Amit Shah said here on Wednesday, adding that nationalism is the party’s identity.

“No doubt, Narendra bhai is the world’s most popular leader. For the first time, there is a government at the Centre which is making policies and taking decisions by keeping the poor and deprived (in mind),” Shah told a gathering of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) activists at a function here to mark the party foundation day.

He said under the leadership of Modi, the BJP wants to ensure development of villages, benefit the poor and farmers of the country. “We are committed to it”.

“Our workers today are very fortunate that they are working for a party which is in power. Now, they should work harder to take it to new heights. Ensure such a strong BJP that it emerges victorious from panchayats to parliament. We have got a very strong base, so erect such a party structure before which all other structures in the world should look small,” Shah stressed.

Shah urged party workers to take the central government’s policies and programmes to the people.

Invoking the issue of nationalism, Shah said that nationalism was the party’s identity for which hundreads of its workers sacrificed their life.

“The party started by 11 people has become a family of 11 crore members. This has happened due to the sacrifices made by thousands of party workers.”

“Nationalism is the identity of our party and our three generations have maintained it by their sacrifices. Now it is our responsibility to protect, preserve and carry on this identity,” he asserted.

Shah started and ended his speech with the slogan “Bharat Mata ki Jai”.

“Our members have played vital role in several nationalist movements including Goa, Kutch and Assam agitations, Ram Janam Bhoomi Andolan and hoisting the national flag at Srinagar’s Lal Chowk amidst terrorist threats,” he said.

The party chief said the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, the BJP’s predecessor, and the BJP were founded to provide an optional political ideology to the country.

“After (Jawaharlal) Nehru became prime minister, his Western-oriented policies and decisions compelled nationalistic forces to pave the way for founding the Jana Sangh. If we had followed Nehru’s policies, we would have gone on the wrong path,” he said.

Shah also cautioned the party workers against complacency.

“When the party is in power, our workers get lazy. Instead, we should work harder so that government schemes could reach to the poorest and their needs are conveyed to the government,” he said.

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