A day after Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan hailed L K Advani as BJP's supreme leader, another voice of support for the party patriarch came on Tuesday when Shatrughan Sinha described him as the "most seasoned and mature" leader who must be at the "helm of affairs".
Sinha also appeared to lend his support to murmurs of discontent in the party over projection of the Gujarat Chief Minister as possible prime ministerial candidate saying if it was done through Parliamentary Board "it would be great".
"I still maintain that Narendra Modi, though he is very popular...the kind of hype that has been created thanks to media and thanks to all of us, he has been very successful.
"If he has been projected as prime minister after Parliamentary Board meeting, it would be a great thing. But the rider (is) that from our point of view Advani sahab must be at the helm of affairs," the MP from Patna Sahib told reporters here.
He said Advani was a statesman. "He is the most seasoned, most mature person and to me he has always been the ultimate leader. He is the last person who would ever sulk. He has never demanded the prime ministerial position. We pray that, whoever, is decided as the PM candidate through the Parliamentary Board, must have the blessings of Mr Advani."
Asked whether Advani should be in the race for prime ministerial candidate, Sinha said, "there could not be a better person than him in terms of statesmanship.
"Advani is, as I said, to me and to most of us, the one who has contributed the maximum in the growth of BJP from 2 seats to almost 200 seats (in the Lok Saba). He cannot be sidelined."
Sinha's comments come a day after the Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister calling Advani the supreme leader of the BJP and set off on his "Jan Ashirvad Yatra" from Ujjain during which posters have photographs of various leaders but not Modi.
I like Advani more than Modi: Shatrughan
Sinha said he favoured Advani over Modi.
"I like Advani more than Modi," the Bharatiya Janata Party's Lok Sabha member from Patna Saheb in Bihar told the media in Patna.
Sinha, who is known for his frankness, expressed unhappiness over the sidelining of Advani in the party and its decision making process.
"It was wrong to sideline Advani. It will not help the party."
Sinha described Advani as a godfather of the BJP. "It is not good for the health of the party."
At the same time, he said there was no one bigger or more popular than former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in the BJP.