The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday hit back at Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari over his remark on Rajnath Singh's gag order with regard to the 2014 prime ministerial candidate, saying that the leadership of the main opposition party is based on merits and consensus, whereas in the Congress it is all about dynastic control.
"It is not Manish Tewari who is making such comments, but it is the arrogance of power. The Bharatiya Janata Party decides as to how the party will run and under whose leadership and the people have faith on us. Our condition is not like the Congress where the determination of leadership is based on dynasty. Our leadership is based on merits and Rajnathji has been selected with full consensus. And so under his leadership we will defeat the Congress in every election," BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar told media in Ahmedabad.
"The manner in which the Congress has put the burden of inflation on the shoulders of the people, the people have decided to defeat the Congress and have a Congress-free country. So, Manish Tewari should worry about the Congress and not the BJP," he added.
Reiterating that Delhi is a very distant dream for the BJP, Tewari earlier in the day said making completely wild claims about leadership and various other issues when elections are still 13 months away only exposes the impatience and the exasperation if not the relentless ambition for power in their ranks.
Tewari said 'BJP President Rajnath Singh's homilies cannot cure the chronic delusionitis, which his esteemed colleagues suffer from'.
"Living in a fantasyland can be very addictive and the BJP has not learnt either from 2004 or 2009 and it would be worth a while to realise that Delhi is very distant. And making these completely wild claims about leadership and various other issues when elections are still 13 months away only exposes the impatience and the exasperation if not the relentless ambition for power in their ranks," he added.
The BJP President yesterday asked his partymen not to comment or speculate on the 2014 prime ministerial candidate.
"I appeal to all leaders of the BJP not to speculate on the prime ministerial candidate. This is a tradition of the BJP not to comment or project anyone as the chief ministerial or the prime ministerial candidate. Who to field as the candidate, what to do and other decisions are made by the Central Parliamentary Board, so if any such question is posed to any member, then they should make it clear that the Central Parliamentary Board will take a decision," said Singh.
"The appeal I am making to the party members is because if party members make comments, we face problems. After today, I will not make an appeal again. This is what I would like to tell my party members," he added.
Speculations has been rife that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, who secured an electoral hat-trick in Gujarat in December last year, can spearhead the BJP's campaign in 2014 polls.
Senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha and noted criminal lawyer Ram Jethmalani have last month openly endorsed Modi's name as prime ministerial candidate. The other BJP leaders have been so far evasive on this issue.
NDA allies like the Janata Dal-United (JD-U) have indicated that Modi's name is not acceptable to them.
The Shiv Sena had earlier said that Sushma Swaraj is its first choice for the prime ministerial candidate in 2014. (ANI)