Justice (Retd.) Dr M Rama Jois
Intention behind the statement of Nitish Kumar, Bihar Chief Minister that the person to be projected as Prime Minister by NDA in 2014 general election should have secular credentials, is not far to seek. It is in the form of caveat against the possibility of projecting Narendra Modi as such in view of his personal dislike for him as established by his declining even to accept Rs 5 lakh sent by Narendra Modi for relief works in Bihar and thereby insulting both Narendra Modi and people of Gujarat as an ingenious show of his secularism. Otherwise there was no occasion to say so now as 2014 general election to Lok Sabha is far away.
The call for secular credentials itself is uncalled for, unwarranted and motivated, for all national parties and their leaders are secular except others who indulge in caste and religious pollution of politics, which alone is anti-secular as stated by Justice Ramaswamy of Supreme Court in SR Bommai case. There is not even an iota of allegation against Narendra Modi who is ruling Gujarat for a decade that he is discriminating any one on grounds of religion and Gujarat is also free from communal riots. Innumerable attempts made to indict him for post Godhra riots became futile for the reason those riots were on account of angry reaction of the people to the inhuman burning of 60 Ayodhya pilgrims alive at Godhra railway station.
In the face of such facts, the call for so-called secular credentials by the person to be projected as Prime Minister can be regarded only as bogus. By the endorsement of his view by Sushil Modi, he has only agreed that a person without any bias against any section of people should be projected as Prime Minister and not against Narendra Modi. The fact remains that everyone of the BJP leaders including Narendra Modi, honestly and sincerely stand for justice for all and discrimination of none which is genuine secularism.
Very rightly the Union Law Minister Salman Khurshid has wondered – “why does Nitish Kumar have fears that Indian Prime Minister will not be secular”.
(The writer is Member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha)