Chandigarh: Punjab's ruling Shiromani Akali Dal Friday hailed the decision of the BJP to name Narendra Modi as its prime ministerial candidate for the 2014 general elections, terming him the "right person" to lead the NDA.
Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal said that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had "chosen the right person to lead the NDA" (National Democratic Alliance) into the forthcoming parliamentary elections.
The Akali Dal is an important part of the NDA and has an alliance government with the BJP in Punjab since 2007.
Badal even challenged the Congress to name party vice president Rahul Gandhi as its prime ministerial candidate for the 2014 elections.
"Let's see whether the Congress has the guts to announce Rahul Gandhi as its prime ministerial candidate," he said.
He said that with the announcement on Modi, more allies would join the NDA in the coming days.
Punjab Chief Minister and Akali Dal patron Parkash Singh Badal said that the announcement of Modi's name by the BJP was the start of the countdown for the exit of the anti-poor and anti-farmer UPA (United Progressive Alliance) central government.
In a statement here, Badal said that the decision was in sync with the mood of the nation and it would help the country get rid of the "grave paralysis of administrative and political will under the scam-tainted UPA regime".
"The announcement would move the scam-hit UPA government from the ICU to the mortuary as the news amounted to complete withdrawal of life support system to an already deceased body," Badal said.