BJP open to alliances, cherishes old friends, says PM Modi

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(Agencies)

Chennai: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Thursday said the BJP was open to alliances and cherished its old friends, in a hint that it was looking to strengthen the NDA in Tamil Nadu ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.

In an interaction with the party’s booth-level workers from five districts in Tamil Nadu through video-conferencing, he recalled the “successful coalition politics” ushered in by former prime minister late Atal Bihari Vajpayee in the 1990s and said the BJP’s doors were “always open”.

“…20 years ago the visionary leader Atalji brought in a new culture in Indian politics, that of successful coalition politics. He gave utmost importance to regional aspirations… BJP has followed the way Atalji has shown us,” he said.

Modi, in this fourth interaction with the party workers in the state, was responding to questions from a worker whether the BJP would ally with AIADMK, DMK or Rajinikanth, who is yet to form his political party.

Lashing out at the Congress for “ill-treating” regional parties, he said, “What Atalji did was in direct contrast to the Congress which has never cared for regional aspirations.”

“Congress ill-treated regional political parties, aspirations and people because they felt they alone have the right to be in power,” he said.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had fought the 2014 Lok Sabha elections in Tamil Nadu leading a rainbow alliance comprising smaller parties including PMK, MDMK of Vaiko and won two of the 39 seats — one each by the party and PMK.

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