Sunday, April 14, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi


M A I N   N E W S

Remove Modi, insists TDP
PM speaks to Naidu, rejects demand

Hyderabad, April 13
Signalling an open confrontation with the BJP, its key ally TDP tonight strongly opposed the move to hold elections in Gujarat, saying it would amount to seeking “political capital out of a human tragedy.”

“It (elections) is a covert attempt to clothe narrow and partisan ends with a legitimacy of a democratic process. The leadership in Gujarat has lost its moral authority to govern,” a resolution adopted at a politburo meeting of the TDP here said.

The strongly worded resolution released after a four-hour-long marathon meeting held at party supremo and Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu’s residence, made a scathing attack on the BJP leadership, saying the devious use of electoral process could not restore the moral authority lost by the Modi government.

The TDP, which holds the key to the stability of the NDA government, reminded that “strict adherence to secularism” was one of the “basic conditions” for its outside support to the coalition government.

“India is a pluralist country divisive forces cannot take the country forward,” the resolution said in an oblique reference to the Sangh Parivar outfits.

“The TDP is opposed to using the noble process of elections for achieving blatantly narrow and communal ends,” the resolution released to the media by party spokesman and MP R. Chandrasekhara Reddy said.

PANAJI: In a significant development, the Prime Minister tonight spoke to the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and rejected the demand for removal of Gujarat Chief Minister.

Mr Vajpayee was closeted with senior party leaders, including Home Minister L.K. Advani and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Parmod Mahajan after a dinner at Raj Bhavan from where the Prime Minister spoke to Mr Naidu.

After dinner at Raj Bhavan, the three leaders (Vajpayee, Advani and Mahajan) spoke to Mr Naidu one by one impressing on him the need for coalition unity.

Mr Mahajan is understood to have told him that any hasty decision on the part of Mr Naidu might help the Congress.

While Mr Naidu is understood to have stuck to his decision on Mr Modi’s immediate removal, the Prime Minister is understood to have conveyed to him that the BJP could not go beyond the executive decision. PTI

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